Historians searching for Victorian crimes
Historians have been handed hundreds of mugshots of Victorian criminals. Now, armed only with the pictures and names, they are searching for the stories behind the stares, putting a crime to the face.
Their pictures may be more than 120 years old but the crimes the Cook family from Middlesbrough committed are still familiar.
The family of four were arrested and photographed in 1894 after breaking into two homes and stealing - among other things - jewellery and a pair of boots.
The offence was enough to see John and Sarah Cook immortalised in the local police force's mugshot book along with their sons John, 19, and 16-year-old Frank.
It is believed the book was compiled by the old North Riding force but it has been in the hands of the modern-day Cleveland Police. And it is one of the key exhibits at the Victorian police station that has opened at Preston Park Museum in Stockton.
But of the hundreds of headshots ranging from 1878 to 1896, the Cooks are the only four about whom anything is known - at the moment.
"It's intriguing to see these faces from the past but not know their stories," said Charlotte Barron, the museum's collection access assistant.
"Sadly we only have the pictures, not the notebooks that would have accompanied them, but by looking back at old newspapers and records we might be able to piece the stories together, that's what we did with the Cooks."
According to newspaper reports, the Cook family were captured by the long arm of the law in April 1894.
The Daily Gazette for Middlesbrough reported the Cooks had broken into a house and stolen goods worth £8 17s 4d (about £807 in today's money) including a lady's gold watch.
The theft was reported by homeowner John W Mitchell, an engine driver.
Mrs Dilworth, of Somerset Street, also testified against the Cooks, claiming her house was ransacked in her absence, with goods to the value of £2 stolen, including a pair of boots.
"It's fascinating to see a whole family committing crime together," said Ms Barron.
"We believe there are siblings and couples among the other faces and we will start with trying to find them and their backgrounds.
"There is a real range of people in this book, from young children up to the elderly."
The term mugshot originated in the early 1840s with the onset of photography, and their use became standardised by regional police forces in the 1870s, Ms Barron said.
"Someone could have their photo taken for one of any number of crimes.
"The most common would have been crimes like theft or larceny, like the Cook family, but there will be murderers and all sorts in this book.
"It is going to be really interesting finding out their stories."
Each image shows the arrested individual with their name written in chalk either on a board held in front of them or, in later years, on a slate above their heads.
The later pictures also feature the arrested with hands raised to the chest to capture any identifying marks, tattoos or missing digits, and a mirror to reflect their profile.