1880 Photo of Billy the Kid Sells for $2.3 Million

The only photo known to exist of Billy the Kid just rang up a winning bid of $2.3 million at an auction.  The photo was actually a tintype and is believed to be the source of myth that Billy the Kid was left-handed, which is supported by the portrayal in the image that his pistol is worn on his right hip with the handle reversed.

The ‘gotcha’ is in the method of making a tintype image, which is printed as a negative image on a black-enameled sheet of iron.  The black enamel background allows the image to appear as a positive once it is burned in.  Further evidence to debunk the left-handed myth are the position of Billy the Kid’s belt buckle and buttons.

[CNN via BoingBoing]

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