William H. Mumler

From Kook Science

William H. Mumler
Born mid-to-late May 1832 [1]
Boston, Massachusetts
Died 16 May 1884 (51)
Boston, Massachusetts
Workplace(s) Photo-Electrotype Co. (from 1877)
Affiliations Photography studio of H. F. Stuart
Spouse(s) Hannah Frances Green (m. 1864)

William Howard Mumler (May 1832 - May 16, 1884) was an American engraver and photographer, arguably the first widely known spiritual photographer, a trade that he began practising professionally as a medium in 1861, continuing until he was charged with fraud, conspiracy, and larceny in New York in 1869 and subsequently retired to pursue more conventional photography. It has been proposed by Felicity Hamer that the photography studio where Mumler made his original foray into photography was owned by his wife, Hannah Frances Mumler, mesmeric physician and medium, under the name H. F. Stuart.[2]

Selected Bibliography

  • Mumler, William H. (1875), The Personal Experiences of William H. Mumler in Spirit-Photography, Boston: Colby and Rich 




  1. "Obituary of William H. Mumler", The Photographic Times 14 (42): 304, June 1884,, "He was born in Hanover Street, Boston, in 1832, and if he had lived a few days longer would have reached his fifty-second year." 
  2. Hamer, M.A. thesis, 2015.