I recently watched a movie with my kids about the Cottingley Fairies. The film was a bit of a snoozer but it was my introduction to the true story of two little girls who, between 1917 and 1920 took beautiful b&w glass plate photographs of one another interacting with fairies in the forest behind their home in Cottingley, England.
A century later, we don’t give a second thought to any notion that what these children photographed were real elfin creatures. Yet in the early 20th century, with photography and scientific culture in its infancy, the five photographs that the young girls took were under serious investigation by the entire world. The case would become a fulcrum on which questions of science and faith were levered.