Amazing Images From The 20th Century
A “colored” drinking fountain, mid 20th century
A mid-20th century drinking fountain labeled “Colored.”
The WAC, 1942
The Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps assisted with operations during World War II. These WAC members in Iowa are wearing gas masks for a training drill.
The Omaha Beach Invasion, 1944
June 6, 1944: D-Day. 34,250 American troops landed at Omaha beach, and many died. 9,387 military casualties lie in a cemetery at Omaha.
The Big Apple Flyover, 1939
A DC-4 passenger plane flies over midtown Manhattan for a landing at JFK.
Bob Marley, 3 years before his death
A candid photograph of Bob Marley, an inspirational figure for the people of Jamaica and the world. He died of cancer in 1983.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. greets the huge crowd gathered to hear him speak at The Mall in Washington DC on August 28, 1963. He gave his “I Have a Dream” speech to this crowd, who were participants in the March on Washington.
“Charlie” detonates, 1951
The detonation of the 14 kiloton nuclear bomb “Charlie” occurred in 1951, before the effects of radiation were fully understood. Many soldiers who were part of the test died young, often of cancer, due to radiation. This test took place in Nevada on October 30, 1951, as part of “Operation Buster-Jangle.”
Roswell Daily Record, 1947
The Roswell incident has created countless conspiracy theories and believers: was it a weather balloon that crashed at a ranch near Roswell, or a UFO?
Tsunami aftermath, 2011
The fourth largest earthquake ever recorded shook Japan to its core. The 9.0 earthquake and resulting tsunamis destroyed a nuclear power plant that has yet to stop leaking.
Ali defeats Liston, 1965
The moment Muhammad Ali defeated Sonny Liston after a round lasting only a minute.
The Babe, 1915
An image of young, 20-year-old Babe Ruth playing for the Red Sox was found in 1988.
Arthur Fonzarelli, 1977
Arthur Fonzarelli of Happy Days poses for the camera. Happy Days is a campy, corny nostalgic show of the 70’s and early 80’s with a special place in American television history.
James Dean and his Porsche, 1955
James Dean died in the same Porsche 550 Spyder he is pictured with here. He was a popular rising-star actor who should have had a long career, and his death after losing control of his car at a high speed shocked the globe.
JFK and RFK, 1962
President John F. Kennedy and his brother, Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, have a tense discussion in the White House. They were most likely discussing the Cuban missile crisis, a product of the Cold War that was at its height during this time.
The Beatles, 1964
Ed Sullivan introduces The Beatles to America on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1964. This was the first time the Beatles would appear before an American audience, and 70 million viewers tuned in to watch them perform.
The Rolling Stones, 1971
The Rolling Stones have been playing together since the 1960’s, and have gone down in classic rock history. Keith Richards and Mick Jagger have gained individual fame as well.
Happy birthday USA, 1976
1976 marked the 200th birthday of the United States of America. People celebrated all over the country despite strained race relations and the struggles of the Vietnam War.
Before Prohibition banned the manufacture and sale of alcohol, Americans lined up to buy the last of the legal supply before the 18th Amendment passed.
At the time of the disaster, this tsunami was the deadliest in history. Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Maldives, and Thailand were all battered by the tsunami off the Indian Ocean. 250,000 people died in one afternoon.
Reagan assassination attempt, 1981
The attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan occurred on March 30, 1981. Ron Hinckley Jr. managed to shoot the president and James Brady. Both survived, but Brady was permanently disabled. Hinckley later admitted he did this to win the heart of famous actress Jodie Foster.