However, on development of the photograph, a mysterious extra could be seen. Could the figure be one of those buried in Boot Hill Cemetery?
Boot Hill Cemetery
Boot Hill is actually a name given to quite a few cemeteries, the first being Boot Hill in Dodge City, Kansas. The name is based on an old-term, meaning that many who lie there died with their boots on, generally implying the death was violent, an execution, pretty much anything that was not a natural death.
It also indicated that a high rate of pauper burials took place within, strangers to the town whose most valuable item were the boots on their feet. However, in Boot Hill, Tombstone, Arizona, not all the burials were from violent death or poor strangers, just a rather high proportion, as many of the burials were of the towns earliest citizens.
The cemetery was closed in 1884, as a new cemetery had opened. Before long the graves were in a neglected state, with markers going missing, further adding to the anonymity of many of the graves. However, it was still used on several occasions for the burials of later outlaws, and finally Emmett Nunnally who spent many years volunteering as a caretaker.
The Ghost Photo
Clanton knew the cemetery well, as one of his ancestors, Billy Clanton, is buried there. Billy Clanton, along with Frank McLaury and Tom McLaury, was killed in the famous gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
The photo was shot on Black and White film, as Clanton’s friend wanted it to have an older feel to it. It was developed at a run of the mill Thrifty Drug Store, as thousands of films had been before. When Clantons friend had a chance to look at the photographs he called and told Clanton that something was strange.
Upon looking at the photographs Clanton was shocked to find an extra person located behind his friend. Ike Clanton knew no one else was in that part of the cemetery when he had taken the picture; the extra figure was a mystery to him.
The figure is located quite low to the ground, almost as if they have no legs or are situated partially in a grave.
Clanton re-staged the same photo several weeks later, placing two friends in the same positions as taken up by his friend in the western gear and the mysterious figure. The result of that photo was the other person’s legs could be clearly seen in the staged photo, the mystery had deepened.
When Clanton took a closer look at the photo, he also made another discovery – what at first looks like a neck tie is, in fact, a knife. The figure, what Clanton believes to be that of a man, seems to be holding a knife, the tip poised, just below the collar.
Unidentified White Male...
So, what do you think?
Did Ike Clanton capture the image of a past resident, who is buried in the cemetery?
Or is this a hoax?
Or maybe just someone random caught in the background of the photo?