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Incredible Drone Footage of Frozen Niagara Falls

Earlier this week, we posted photos of things that had frozen over, which included Niagara Falls. Now, thanks to drone footage shot by NBC, you can see the frigid falls up close. The water surging beneath the ice formations is quite the spectacle.

According to Snopes, cold weather has kept water from going over the falls only once—and it wasn't because they were frozen solid. On March 30, 1848, the Buffalo Express reported:

The Falls of Niagara can be compared to nothing but a mere mill dam this morning ... Last night at 11 o'clock the factories fed from the waters of this majestic river were in full operation, and at 12 o'clock the water was shut off, the wheel suddenly ceased their revolutions, and everything was hushed into silence. Various are the conjectures as to the cause; the most reasonable of which is that Lake Erie must be making a grand delivery of ice, and ... the mouth of the Niagara, although large, is not quite enough to take in the whole at once, and that the consequences are, back water.

People flocked to see the dry falls, and, according to Wired, traversed the riverbed on foot and horseback. The owner of the Maid in the Mist sightseeing boat even took the opportunity to blast out some rocks that had threatened his vessel. The falls would remain that way until the evening of March 31, when the ice dam broke and water began to flow over the falls once again.

[h/t Thrillist]

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By Ben Wittick (1845–1903) - Brian Lebel's Old West Show and Auction, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons
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History
Photo of Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett, Purchased for $10, Could Be Worth Millions
By Ben Wittick (1845–1903) - Brian Lebel's Old West Show and Auction, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons
By Ben Wittick (1845–1903) - Brian Lebel's Old West Show and Auction, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Several years ago, Randy Guijarro paid $2 for a few old photographs he found in an antiques shop in Fresno, California. In 2015, it was determined that one of those photos—said to be the second verified picture ever found of Billy the Kid—could fetch the lucky thrifter as much as $5 million. That story now sounds familiar to Frank Abrams, a lawyer from North Carolina who purchased his own photo of the legendary outlaw at a flea market in 2011. It turns out that the tintype, which he paid $10 for, is thought to be an image of Billy and Pat Garrett (the sheriff who would eventually kill him) taken in 1880. Like Guijarro’s find, experts say Abrams’s photo could be worth millions.

The discovery is as much a surprise to Abrams as anyone. As The New York Times reports, what drew Abrams to the photo was the fact that it was a tintype, a metal photographic image that was popular in the Wild West. Abrams didn’t recognize any of the men in the image, but he liked it and hung it on a wall in his home, which is where it was when an Airbnb guest joked that it might be a photo of Jesse James. He wasn’t too far off.

Using Google as his main research tool, Abrams attempted to find out if there was any famous face in that photo, and quickly realized that it was Pat Garrett. According to The New York Times:

Then, Mr. Abrams began to wonder about the man in the back with the prominent Adam’s apple. He eventually showed the tintype to Robert Stahl, a retired professor at Arizona State University and an expert on Billy the Kid.

Mr. Stahl encouraged Mr. Abrams to show the image to experts.

William Dunniway, a tintype expert, said the photograph was almost certainly taken between 1875 and 1880. “Everything matches: the plate, the clothing, the firearm,” he said in a phone interview. Mr. Dunniway worked with a forensics expert, Kent Gibson, to conclude that Billy the Kid and Mr. Garrett were indeed pictured.

Abrams, who is a criminal defense lawyer, described the process of investigating the history of the photo as akin to “taking on the biggest case you could ever imagine.” And while he’s thrilled that his epic flea market find could produce a major monetary windfall, don’t expect to see the image hitting the auction block any time soon. 

"Other people, they want to speculate from here to kingdom come,” Abrams told The New York Times of how much the photo, which he has not yet had valuated, might be worth. “I don’t know what it’s worth. I love history. It’s a privilege to have something like this.”

[h/t: The New York Times]

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