They say those who forget history are doomed to repeat it, which’s an oddly ominous statement considering Michael Jackson albums are very enjoyable to listen to. Recalling history that everyone forgot, because it never happened: Alternate Histories.
AH is a series of 19th and early 20thC lithographs, etchings, and maps that have been hilariously altered by a former filmmaker/current Photoshopper to include monsters and suitably Victorian-looking mechanical contraptions, but with every piece conceived to look completely normal at a glance, requiring a closer eyeballing to "notice just what's wrong with each picture", so in that regard, they're nothing like the Transformers movies. A smattering:
The Signing of the Declaration of Independence John Trumbull's famous Revolutionary-era portrait shows the Declaration being ratified by the likes of Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and naturally, Metallo the Mechanical Man, a little-known Virginia politico robot famous for his statement "Give me liberty, or give me 1011001".
The Menacing of the East River Bridge This commemorative lithograph celebrates the opening of the not-yet-renamed Brooklyn Bridge in 1883, with a giant tentacled monster attacking both the bridge and a steamship, which is actually how most people in Williamsburg get around these days, although they’ll probably change to whaling vessels now that you know about it.
The Invisible Gentleman's Association of Philadelphia A souvenir photo of a very well-appointed dining room at Griffin’s Oyster House, from a 1909 meeting of the Philly chapter of hard-to-see dudes, fails to show a single attendee, or does it?!?! (It doesn’t.)