8 /10 Hard Sell

Trying to get the Parisian police to do more work was met with general jeering, but Alphonse persevered and started his practice on his own.

He measured convicts at the La Sante Prison in Paris against all mockery from prisoners and the guards.

His system first took shape and would later serve to appropriately and adequately recapture the men based on their defined characteristics.

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7 /10 The Bertillon System

Bertillon’s self-named system took a series of measurements of body parts that were immutable and unchangeable outside of direct mutilation.

These included head length and breadth, middle finger length, left foot length, and the cubit length – which is the length from the elbow to the fingertip.

In addition, once the technology was in place, he added photographs taken head-on and from the side of a convict’s face, which we now know as “mugshots,” to fully capture the identity of a criminal on the day of their internment.


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