Fortean Photography: Brotherly Love from Beyond the Grave

The above photograph was taken when Robert A. Ferguson was speaking at a Spiritualist convention in Los Angeles, California, on November 16th, 1968. He had recently published a book on Psychic Telemetry. When the photograph was developed, Ferguson couldn’t believe his eyes. He recognized the ghostly figure as his brother Walter, who had been killed in 1944 during World War II.

Maybe Walter was proudly watching his brother speak that day, but this “ghost” is a classic case of motion blur. In the photograph, Ferguson was blown out and lit by a flash, in a room with low-lighting. When a camera is trying to capture subjects in low lighting, the photographer must use a slower shutter speed in order to do so. The combination of the flash and the movement of the subject within that time of capture creates a motion blur effect, which appears clearer when frozen by a flash. Both the subject and his double are not the best quality, so it is hard to determine if there are any differences in features between the two figures. Regardless, Walter and Robert were brothers and likely shared very similar genetics in terms of appearance.

I understand the fact that this image is easily debunked is probably an unpopular opinion in certain crowds. I love the idea that the ghost of one man’s brother made an appearance at such a pivotal moment in his career, but we must not allow our personal feelings to bias our opinions when investigating the paranormal. That doesn’t have to control what we believe, just what we present as evidence; so, regardless of what I see here, I would like to think Walter was there.

Unusually yours,


ghostsTobias Wayland