eBay seller “shadesofgrey*” has posted two auctions for a total of three photos of monks at the Trappist New Melleray Abbey in Iowa. The photos were taken by Russell Trall Neville of Kewanee, Illinois. Neville, an attorney, was also a pioneering cave explorer and photographer.
The first auction is for this photo:
Click here for a (much!) larger view. The accompanying caption reads:
The Prior, second in authority in the Trappist Monastery, New Melleray, Poesta, Iowa, here presents two novitiates to the Abbot during the Solemn Profession service. The Prior commends them to the abbot and petitions him to permit them to make their solemn profession, which consists of assuming the final vow of the Order. This is one of the series of photographs, the only ones ever taken in a Trappist Monastery during a service of this character.
The second auction is for two Trappist funeral photos. The first, taken during the vigil in the church, is captioned, “Brother Eugene, Sup-Prior, the third in authority … during funeral services for a departed brother. The deceased is in his habit and will be buried without a coffin.” The second is taken in the grave yard. Since the deceased brother is visible in the photos, I’ve put them below the cut.