The Browns of eBay?
current eBay item on sale, purported by its owner/seller to be a set of daguerreotypes from the 1850s of our man Brown and his family. According to the eBay description the “Image Shows fantaical [sic] anti slavery religious zealot John Brown with his wife Mary Ann, oldest son John Brown Jr and 5 more of their children.”
In fact, while the items for sale may be authentic mid-19th century daguerreotypes, they are clearly NOT images of John Brown the abolitionist and his family. The owner/seller probably is aware that there is good reason to doubt their authenticity, but makes quite an effort to rationalize selling the dags as John Brown pics:
Hilarious. Of course, the comparison may have been made between Brown family daguerreotypes and these items, but the question is whether the comparison proves or fails—and the answer is that they fail. The pretense that these images conform to certain criteria—a younger wife, large family, and family resemblance—is clearly rationalization on the part of the owner/seller, who is trying to unload an anonymous set of daguerreotypes at quite a profit. In fact, although we do not have many images of the family, it is clear that this eBay family are not Browns; the younger woman bears no resemblance to Mary Brown, and the children do not correspond to the Brown family for that time period in sex or age.
Needless to say, if you are going to spend $5000 this Christmas for a John Brown stocking stuffer, this is not the item. You may do better getting a deal on some loose John Brown whisker hairs or possibly a chunk of wood from his gallows.