Colorized Photos Capture A Different Side To History Than You Already Know
By | November 10, 2020
Take a closer look at these handpicked photos from history, no longer in stark black and white but now in beautiful color. Each photo has its own amazing history, but seeing them in full color allows you to feel like you're really in the moment. You never know what's going to come up next...
Each photo is a must-see. Their stories are full of intriguing facts and jaw dropping tales, but they're not all fit for consumption.
⚠️ Warning, once you see these photos in full color black and white will never be the same... ⚠️
Following World War II the people of Poland wanted to find beauty any way that they could, and they definitely weren't going to get it looking around the blown out buildings in places like Warsaw.
Instead, many people turned to photographs that used painted backdrops to create a sense of peace and serenity. It's understandable that the people of Poland wanted to go back to a time when they weren't embroiled in a massive war, and that they were still one with nature.
This image is stunning, not just because of the dichotomy between the two backdrops, but because of the way it shows just how much people want to forget.
This is truly devastating. Following the sinking of the Titanic Michel And Edmond Navratil survived the doomed ship but were left all alone in the new world. It's not just that they were alone, it's that they were kidnapped and their mother didn't know where they were.
Taken by their father under the auspices of going on Easter break, he set off for America to keep them for himself. Registered as second-class passengers under false names to avoid being tracked by the French police, the trip was a pleasant one until the ship was struck by an iceberg. The last time the boys saw their father he was lowering them into a life boat.
They stayed temporarily in the home of another survivor, Margaret Hays, on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, while the authorities attempted to track down their relatives. Because they spoke no English and were traveling under false names it was nearly impossible to find their families.
It wasn't until their mother spotted an article about the "Titanic Orphans" that she realized that her children were safe. Once their mother was able to give proper identification she took a trip to the New World to retrieve them. All's well that ends well.
During World War II workers at the Louvre museum in Paris put themselves in danger and went to great lengths to keep some of the most well known and important pieces of art out of the hands of Hitler.
Following Germanies annexation of Austria in 1938, Jacques Jaujard, director of France's National Museums, put together secret plan to stash as much of the Louvre's art as possible, a collection that includes 3,600 paintings alone.
When Germany and the Soviet Union announced their Nonaggression Pact on August 25, 1939, Jaujard closed the Louvre for three days under the guise of making repairs. Paintings and statues were stored in wooden crates with marks indicating their evacuation priority—yellow dots for most of the collection, green dots for the works of major significance, and red dots for the greatest treasures of global patrimony. The Mona Lisa was placed in a crate marked with three red dots, the only work in the entire collection with that rating.
Three days later, hundreds of trucks began a convoy to take the 1000 crates of ancient artifacts and 268 crates of paintings and more to the Loire Valley, far away from bombing targets.
As a member of royalty Queen Elizabeth has always held the English people close to her heart. Even as a young woman she did everything she could to make sure they were safe and secure... even during World War II.
Although her parents were wary of allowing her to take part in the war effort, following months of pestering them she was allowed to join the Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service when she was 18 years old.
Not only did she drive an ambulance but she trained in London as a mechanic and military truck driver, making her the only female member of the royal family to have entered the armed forces.
Inspiration struct English author A.A. Milne when he watched his son, Christopher Robin, play with a stuffed bear that he nicknamed "Edward Bear." Milne noticed how much the boy loved the bear as well as an American black bear at the London Zoo. It's name? "Winnie," short for Winnipeg.
According to Milne, he didn't just cherry pick ideas from his son's life, but he asked the young boy what the bear's name should be in his stories. He explained in the introduction to Winnie-the-Pooh:
Well, when Edward Bear said that he would like an exciting name all to himself, Christopher Robin said at once, without stopping to think, that he was Winnie-the-Pooh. And so he was.
This is a truly sad story... but luckily it has a happy twist. Born of December 21, 1829, when Laura Bridgman was only 24 months old she lost her sight, hearing, sense of smell, and most of her sense of taste after falling ill with scarlet fever.
With no real way to communicate with her, Bridgman was brought to the Perkins School for the Blind. Director Samuel Gridley Howe heard that she could only communicate via rudimentary sign language and he was keen to try and help her.
Bridgman was brought to the school shortly before she turned eight years old, and through a series of learning exercises where she identified various objects she was able to expand her intellect and began communicating with the staff at the school.
Young Winston Churchill as a Cornet in the 4th Queen's Hussar's Cavalry, 1895. He was only 21 at the time. Click next to see Winston all grown up....
This is definitely a different look than we're used to seeing for Winston Churchill. In 1895 he was but a boy finishing up his time with the 4th Hussars, a calvary regiment in the British Army.
In his memoirs Churchill remembered his time with the Hussars as an era when he made good friends and began a journey towards a busy life leading the military and navigating the choppy waters of World War II. He wrote:
From the beginning of 1895 down to the present time of writing I have never had time to turn around. I could count almost on my fingers the days when I have nothing to do. An endless moving picture in which one was an actor. On the whole Great Fun! But the years 1895 to 1900 which are the staple of this story exceed in vividness, variety and exertion anything I have known — except of course the opening months of the Great War.
Here's Winston Churchill handling a "tommy gun" during an inspection of invasion coastal defenses near Hartlepool, County Durham, England. He's 66 years old in this photo taken on July 31st, 1940. Do you see the resemblance from the previous photo?
We tend to think of Winston Churchill as a political who spent his time in World War II behind a desk and tossing out powerful speeches, but he was a lifelong soldier who liked to get his hands dirty.
This photo was taken in the middle of an inspection of invasion defenses near Hartlepool, on July 21, 1940. Weirdly enough, the photo was used by British and German forces as propaganda.
The British removed the extra soldiers from the frame to make him look like a solitary fighter, while Nazi propaganda minister Goebbels created a wanted poster out of the shot. There's two sides to every coin.
A soldier of the 1st US Army, among debris inside the Monument to the Battle of the Nations in Leipzig, Germany April 1945.
Created as a monument to the 1813 Battle of Leipzig, this German structure was finished in 1913 and cost six million goldmarks. During World War II, Hitler used the monument as a place to host meetings. It was so important to the Third Reich that an anti-aircraft gun was placed on top.
When Leipzig was captured by American forces on April 18, 1945, the monument was the final place to fall. Even though it had the protection of 300 soldiers and members of the Hitler Youth, when the building suffered a direct hit from an artillery shell the Germans surrendered.
This shot not only shows the aftermath of a chaotic battle, but the strange feeling of isolation that comes with being alone in a monument to war.
Charlie Chaplin attends the premiere of his newest film, "City Lights," in Los Angeles, accompanied by Albert Einstein. February 2, 1931
It's strange to think of these two luminaries crossing the boundaries from their specific worlds - science for Einstein and acting for Chaplin - but they formed a bond that would be one of the strongest in the early 20th century.
The two met at the premiere of City Lights in Los Angeles and hit it off immediately. Einstein and Chaplin were over the moon with one another, with the scientist believing that Chaplin was the most universally important person of his day because of his ability to get a message across silently. Chaplain reportedly responded:
But your glory is even greater! The whole world admires you, even though they don't understand a word of what you say.
Paratroopers of Easy Company (Band of Brothers), at Berghof (Adolf Hitler's home in the Bavarian Alps), 1945.
For the 101st paratroopers unit the taking of Berchtesgaden was less of a strategic objective and more of a matter of saying they made it their first. They didn't need to take the Eagle's Nest away from Hitler, but it was still fun to do.
There's debate about whether or not it was the 101st paratroopers to make it to the Eagle's Nest because there were SO MANY troops taking this place by storm. It's honestly miraculous that the place held up like it did. One of the soldiers from the 7th Infantry Regiment remembered:
We couldn’t believe what we saw. The walls were covered with shelves and the shelves were stocked with all kinds of wines, champagnes and liqueurs. The food bins were well stocked with a variety of canned hams, cheese and two-gallon cans containing pickles.
Padaung Women of Myanmar, looking at a guard, posted at St. James' Palace 16th century main gate, during their visit in London, 1935
Imagine the culture clash that occurred on this visit to St. James' Palace. Not only are these women from a completely different society, one where beauty standards are totally out fo the norm of western society, but they're standing in front of a palace that's been standing for generations.
As strange as the custom of elongating one's neck may seem to us, they must have thought it was odd to have a man in a furry hat standing outside an old brick entryway. Or maybe they're ahead of the curve and and knew exactly what they were seeing.
Traveling outside of your comfort zone is an important thing no matter who you are, and experiencing new cultures and ways of life is one of the few ways in which we can really grow...
October 29th, 1929 the last day of the stock market crash that would become known as Black Tuesday.
Black Tuesday was one of the most terrifying days in America. On October 29, 1929 investors traded around 16 million shares on the New York Stock Exchange during one day. Investors lost billions of dollars, wiping out thousands of workers on Wall Street and leaving them skins.
Following Black Tuesday, America was sent into a turbulent downward spiral that saw the country and the rest of the industrialized world sunk in the Great Depression, the worst and longest-lasting economic downturn in the history of the Western world. It took more than a decade for the country to recover - by 1933 almost 15 million people were unemployed.
A Leading Stoker nicknamed "Popeye," with 21 years of service, on board the battleship HMS Rodney, one of two Nelson-class battleships built for the Royal Navy in the mid 1920s. Photo taken in Sep. 1940
We're mot sure what his name is, but this British sailor certainly looks like someone, don't you think? According to the Imperial War Museum his nickname was "Popeye," and by 1940 he served for 21 years about the HMS Rodney.
Weirdly enough, this Popeye isn't the inspiration for the super famous cartoon Popeye, that would actually be Frank "Rocky" Fiegel - a one-eyed, pipe-smoking bartender who was more prone to shooting bourbon and cans of spinach.
Still, it's mind boggling to see that someone could embody the look of Popeye the Sailor Man and not actually be the inspiration for... oh you get it.
Senegalese WW1 soldier who lost both his arms writes a letter with his new prosthetic limbs. At the Vocational Rehabilitation School for Amputees, 28 Avenue de New York, Paris, 1918
We don't often think of countries outside of the "main" ones as fighting in the world wars, but it's right there in the title - the whole world was taking part in this brutal affairs.
Even though World War I was a fight between European powers, the battle involved Africa thanks to the fact that there were British colonies across the continent. The battles were fierce, and every African country was affected by the exclusion of Germans from African trade.
People from across the continent got involved, with many Africans giving their life in the battle to bring peace to the world. Many of the soldiers in Senegal were trained to take up vacancies on the Front, meaning that they saw some of the worst battles of the war.
Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe at Tiffany Club, 1954
As different as these two women were, they formed a friendship that lasted a lifetime. Ella Fitzgerald toured America as one of the preeminent singers of her generation, but even so she was forced to wait in basements and stay in roach motels because of Jim Crow laws.
Even when she wasn't playing the south Fitzgerald was forced to obey arcane rules because of the color of her skin. The one place she wasn't allowed to play in Los Angeles was the Mocambo, they actually had a rule against performers who were people of color, but one call from Marilyn Monroe set them straight. Fitzgerald explains:
I owe Marilyn Monroe a real debt… she personally called the owner of the Mocambo, and told him she wanted me booked immediately, and if he would do it, she would take a front table every night. She told him – and it was true, due to Marilyn’s superstar status – that the press would go wild... The owner said yes, and Marilyn was there, front table, every night. The press went overboard. After that, I never had to play a small jazz club again. She was an unusual woman – a little ahead of her times. And she didn’t know it.
Pablo Picasso wearing a hat and holding a revolver & holster given to him by Gary Cooper at Cannes, 1958
Pablo Picasso was the father of some of the most fascinating and abstract forms of art of the 20th century, but that doesn't mean he didn't like to watch the same movies that we do.
Apparently he was a very big Gary Cooper fan, and even entertained the actor at his studio when Cooper came to Cannes in 1958. Who would have thought that these two would hit it off.
The two men were keen on shooting guns and dressing in western wear, so they were basically a couple of grown up kids. It feels good to know that even the most intellectually and artistically gifted of us just like to play every once in a while.
"The Kiss of Life" - A utility worker giving mouth-to-mouth to a co-worker after he contacted a low voltage wire, 1967
Look closer... this photo really isn't what it seems. Taken in 1967 by Rocco Morabito, this photo shows the moment that utility worker J.D. Thompson saved the life of Randall G. Champion with mouth to mouth after Champion touched a a low voltage line.
The utility workers were performing routine maintenance on a telephone poll when Champion brushed a low voltage line and was immediately knocked unconscious. As Thompson breathed life into Champion's lungs, photographer Rocco Morabito passed by and heard screaming. He explains:
I passed these men working and went on to my assignment. I took eight photos at the strike. I thought I’d go back and see if I could rind another picture... I heard screaming. I looked up and I saw this man hanging down. Oh my God. I didn’t know what to do. I took a picture right quick. J.D. Thompson was running toward the pole. I went to my car and called an ambulance. I got back to the pole and J.D. was breathing into Champion. I backed off, way off until I hit a house and I couldn’t go any farther. I took another picture. Then I heard Thompson shouting down: He’s breathing!
Colonel Thomas Edward Lawrence, also known as Lawrence of Arabia
Lawrence of Arabis is one of the most well known figures of World War I. Even though he worked to take down the Turkish military in spectacular fashion he didn't have any traditional training.
In 1914, he was hired by the British military on an archaeological expedition of the Sinai Peninsula and Negev Desert. After the war broke out he spent two years riding a desk until he was sent to the battlefield in the Middle East.
With no formal training he lead missions behind enemy lines and destroyed Turkish railroads in order to stop the flow of soldiers and accessories. In a few short years, with no training, he became a true hero.
The tallest, shortest, and fattest man of Europe playing a game of cards, 1913
Sure, this is a photo opportunity, but it's also a fascinating look into history. Not only does it show that people were obsessed with humans who lived at extremes, but it proves that we're not that much different now.
This photo is kind of like a vintage version of something that we'd see on a slow news day with a headline like: Can you believe that the world's shortest, tallest, and fattest man got together for a card game? You won't believe what happens next.
It's amazing to think that we haven't changed all that much... and that the shortest man was drinking as much as the other two guys. Hopefully he paced himself.
U.S. athlete Jesse Owens salutes during the presentation of his gold medal for the long jump, after defeating Nazi Germany’s Lutz Long, during the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin
The 1936 Summer Olympics were supposed to be showcases for Hitler's regime that portrayed the German people as supermen. Along with a huge new stadium in Berlin and a modern airport, Hitler wanted to take home as much gold as possible in front of television audiences around the world.
America nearly boycotted the 1936 Olympics due to Germany's discriminatory policies against Jews, but the American Olympic Committee rebutted that the games were meant for athletes, not politicians. Jesse Owens and other black athletes felt that they grew up in an unequal society and that America's stance was hypocritical - these brave athletes took great joy in wracking up wins for the U.S.
Owens took home four gold medals in track and field events, becoming the first American to do so.
A German soldier with a saw tooth bayonet stands in a dugout wearing his brow plate slid down to his neck, World War I.
During World War I, trench warfare was the name of the game. Vast maxes of trenches were dug through the ground, making the Front look like ant hills from up above.
The German army covered their soldiers as much as possible to keep them safe during the hand to hand combat that occurred regularly in trenches. Many of the men wore a form of combined metal skull cap and nose guard protective headgear which weighed about five pounds altogether. The only penetrable section on their body was their eyes.
Couple this outfit with a sawtooth bayonet and you've got a soldier who's nearly unstoppable in close quarters combat.
Three surviving crew members of RMS Titanic, prepared to give witness statements to the US Senate inquiry in 1912
Following the sinking of the Titanic there were a lot of questions. When a ship that's purported to be unsinkable goes down in the briny deep people want to know what happened.
Beginning on April 19, 1912, four days after the Titanic completely submerged, 18 days of official investigation went underway with Senators questioning everything from the inadequate number of lifeboats, to the ice warnings, to the speed at which the ship was moving.
More than 80 witnesses provided testimony, with surviving passengers and crew members presenting evidence. Even though the inquiry was lambasted in the media at the time, it led to changes in safety protocol.
Henry Behrens, the smallest man in the world dances with his pet cat in the doorway of his Worthing home, 1956.
As strange as it must be to be famous simply for your height, the life of Henry Behrens doesn't look like it's all that bad. Not only could he dance with his cat wherever he wanted (and what a big cat that is) but he was a well known personality.
Even by the 1950s the world was changing in its beliefs about people who looked different. Circuses were still traveling with "freak shows," but that time was nearly over - people were tired of judging everyone for the way they looked. Do you think the rest of Behrens' house was sized for him? Let's hope so.
A US soldier stands amid crates and stacks of loot stored by Nazi Germany in Schlosskirche, Bavaria, 1945
As World War II came to a close the Allied Forces took more and more of the strongholds belonging to Germany. Many of those spots contained massive amounts of Nazi loot, much of it artifacts and priceless art. Imagine the feeling of seeing a museum shoved into a single room... it must be breathtaking.
It's clear from this photo that immensity of war isn't only in the battles and suffering, but in the way that entire cultures are ransacked in the name of bolstering a country.
Who knows what happened to the artifacts in this room? Hopefully all of these pieces made it back to their homes...
Bodybuilder Gene Jantzen with wife Pat, and eleven-month-old son Kent, 1947
Everybody's got to start somewhere, and for 11 month old Kent Jantzen it's doing pull ups in his diapers. Strong man Gene Jantzen was seriously old school. He believed that hard work and pumping iron were the only way to build muscles... he didn't cut corners.
According to legend, Gene Jantzen began his life as a chubby youngster and after he was bullied into stepping onto a frozen pond - nearly causing him to freeze to death - he started pumping iron and made sure that he was never bullied again.
He didn't just work on building muscle, Jantzen was a cardio nut. As a teen he ran for nine miles a day before going for a swim. He later said:
Lot of people used to tell my dad, ‘Louie, you better watch that kid. There’s something wrong with him. He’s out there running in the hot sun, and that’s not good for the heart.’
Claude Monet, French artist and a leading member of the Impressionist group of painters shows off his work
More than just a member of the impressionists, Claude Monet practically invented this aesthetic which features small brush strokes and an emphasis on accurate depiction of light and the way it changes throughout the day.
Unfortunately, even though Monet created an entire genre of art he was super broke for most of his life. He continued to paint even though he was constantly asking for money from his family. Nothing could stop him. As his first wife was on her deathbed after months of poor health he continued painting for 12 hours a day. Sometimes that's the way genius goes.
Dick Winters and his Easy Company lounging at Eagle's Nest, Hitler's former residence in the Bavarian Alps, 1945
Hitler's hide away at the summit of the Kehlstein, a rocky outcrop that rises above the Obersalzberg near the town of Berchtesgaden was meant for members of the Nazi Party only. That being said Hitler hated going because he was afraid of heights. Classic Hitler.
The Eagle's Nest was taken by the Allies on May 4, 1945, with members of the 101st Airborne, the 7th Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Infantry Division of XV Corps of the U.S., and Seventh Army of the Sixth Army Group storming the Nest separately.
In spite of facing a massive bombing on April 25, the Eagle's Nest was left unscathed and used by the Allies as a military post until 1960 when it was given back to Bavaria.
Crow Native Americans watching the rodeo at Crow fair in Montana, 1941
The Crow Fair is an annual rodeo started in 1904 by leaders of the Crow nation. The fair has an open welcome policy for all Native American tribes of the Great Plains, giving the whole thing an air of a massive family reunion. It's the largest Northern Native American gathering, bringing 45,000 spectators and participants per year.
Held near Billings, Montana on the third week of every August, the Crow Fair has everything that you'd normally find at a normal fair - a parade, a rodeo, and a dance.
The rodeo draws in professional cowboys who take part in horse races, rustling, and even bronc riding. It's a heck of a good time.
June 6th, 1944: Into the Jaws of Death
Taken by Robert F. Sargent on June 6, 1944, this photo shows American soldiers pouring from the ramp of a Coast Guard-manned landing vehicle. The men had to wade through the cold water for the last few yards of their terrifying journey towards the beach of Normandy.
Men were shot down by enemy fire as the Coast Guard manned transport ship traveled back to its home ship in order to pick up more soldiers. Taken at 7:40 AM local time, the photo shows soldiers getting out of the Higgins boat and wading towards the "Easy Red" sector of Omaha Beach.
Orville Wright flying a glider over the dunes of North Carolina, 1902
The Wright Glider came from one of the most unlikely of places, a kite. The brothers created the kite to test a system that could "warp wind." Once they proved their theory they built two gliders in 1900 and 1901, although they were less than successful.
By 1902, the brothers had constructed a glider that completed between 700 and 1,000 flights in September and October. The difference between this glider and the last two was that it allowed them to take longer flights at shallow angles, and the flights could last for a whopping 26 seconds. It wasn't much but it was a start.
Queen Victoria and her family, including King Edward VII, Tsar Nicholas II, Tsarina Alexandra, Kaiser Wilhelm II and Empress Frederick at a wedding in Coburg, Germany, 1894
Think about how hard it is to get everyone in your family together, we're talking cousins, aunts, uncles... the whole gang. Now imagine how hard it would be to get everyone together if you were royalty.
Not only are there formalities as to who can speak to who and who's on top of the hierarchy, but someone has to be in charge at home. Or at the very least someone has to be around in order to receive a message from the royal wedding.
This gathering was clearly a lifetime in the making, we hope everyone had a time that they'll never forget.
"The King's Speech" - A staged photograph of George VI, addressing the nation after Britain's Declaration of War against Germany on September, 1939
Even for royalty overcoming a stutter or any kind of speech impediment can be absolutely maddening. George VI was never meant to be the King of England, but after his brother Edward VIII abdicated the throne in December 1936 it was up to George to keep the clocks running on time.
It wasn't easy for George to take up the reigns of royalty. He was unprepared for the role, and the anxiety that he suffered (who wouldn't) only made his stutter worse.
Before giving his first radio address on September 3, 1939, George studied with Austrian speech therapist Lionel Logue for an hour every day leading up to his ascension to the throne. It's cool to see that even if you're the King of England you've got to put in hard work to see results.
"West meets East" Two german brothers separated by The Berlin Wall meet again during the “border pass agreement” of 1963
Imagine being separated from your family by a wall and the threat of death. That's what the people of East and West Berlin were living with everyday following the construction of the Berlin Wall on August 12, 1961.
As construction commenced Germans were forced with choosing where to call home. Would they try to keep their family together? Or would they attempt to find a new home in an area with better infrastructure. These problems were on the mind of everyone in Germany as the Berlin Wall went up.
28 months after the Berlin Wall went up, effectively shutting people in their respective parts of the country, the border pass agreement was signed December 17, 1963, allowing for limited visits during the Christmas season. It wasn't much, but it was a start.
A 32-year-old mother of 7 children called Florence Owens Thompson, Nipomo, California. February 1936. (Migrant Mother, by Dorothea Lange).
Taken in 1936, this photo shows the pain and the stress that was infused into America during the Great Depression. Many families were forced to work as migrant workers for very little money.
Lange took the photo while working for the U.S. government’s Farm Security Administration with hopes to raise awareness and provide support for migrant farmers. She met Florence Owens Thompson and her children in a camp where the workers were devastated following the failure of their pea crop. Lange remembers:
I saw and approached the hungry and desperate mother, as if drawn by a magnet. I do not remember how I explained my presence or my camera to her, but I do remember she asked me no questions. I made five exposures, working closer and closer from the same direction.
A group of bootblacks gathers around an old Civil War veteran in Pennsylvania, 1935.
Imagine the kinds of stories that this guy has to tell... It's amazing that a Civil War veteran could still be kicking around in the early 20th century, easily longer through World War I.
These young men look like they're enjoying the antics and stories from the Civil War, even if this man was only a drummer boy or a messenger he must have had some amazing stories to tell. It's hard to even fathom what it was like in the 19th century, let alone what it was like to be in the middle of the bloodies war fought on American soil.
It's rare that such a brilliant character would also be such a cool guy. There are things we all known about Einstein: he was a genius, he always wore the same clothing, something about relativity...
But Einstein's life wasn't the educational bowl of cherries that many people believe it to be. When Einstein fist came to America, accepting a job at Princeton after Hitler rose to power in 1933, he was watched like a hawk by the FBI - not because he was German, but because he was a pacifist.
The agency spent 22 years listening in on his phone conversations, reading his mail, and going through his trash. By the time Einstein passed away in 1955 the FBI had collected 1,800 pages on him. Talk about a legacy.
American soldiers watch as the Tricolor flies from the Eiffel Tower again, c. 25 August 1944, Paris, France
Following four years of Nazi occupation, the French 2nd Armored Division and the U.S. 4th Infantry Division rolled into Paris to take back the city of lights. General Dietrich von Choltitz, commander of the German garrison, was under orders from Hitler to destroy the city's landmarks and level the city but he decided to roll over instead.
There was some fighting, but the German military pretty much got out of the way of the Allies and on August 26, 1944, Choltitz signed a formal surrender.
With Paris back in France's hands, Free French General Charles de Gaulle took the military on a celebratory march through the Champs d’Elysees. There was some more fighting but nothing could bring down the joy of the people of France.
Charlie Chaplin in 1916, at the age of 27
Charlie Chaplin was working on his own stage show by the time he was 12 years old, working as a comedian on the vaudeville circuit in the the United States as a featured player with the Fred Karno Repertoire Company.
In 1913, when he was only 24 years old, Charlie Chaplin was signed to a film contract with Mack Sennett and the Keystone Film Company for $150 a week. Although, it wouldn't be long before he was making much more money thanks to his continued success.
One year after this photo was taken Chaplin became an independent producer and built his own studios on La Brea Avenue.
Eunice Hancock, a 21-year-old woman, operates a compressed-air grinder in a Midwest aircraft plant during World War II. August 1942
When we think of women during World War II the first thing that comes to our heads is Rosie the Riveter, but the real version of that advertising campaign were women like Eunice Hancock who worked tirelessly on jobs that had once been held by the brothers and husbands - not literally of course.
Facing the prospect of a failing work force due to men joining the war effort, factories and businesses changed their rules to allow women to enter the work place.
This change in rules not only showed that women could do the same jobs as men and just as well, but it inspired women to keep working after the end of the war.
Homecoming prisoner: Vienna, Austria, 1946
Taken by Ernst Haas, an Austrian-American photojournalist, this photo shows the sorrow of returning home following World War II. The curious nature of leaving a POW camp, unsure of what the outside world holds.
While Haas took photos throughout the war, it's this post war work that shows Austrian prisoners of war returning home that brought him to the national stage. He was offered a job with LIFE magazine but declined in order to work as independent photographer.
Nearly a decade later LIFE would publish Haas' photo essay on New York City, one of his most groundbreaking pieces of work.
Martin Luther King Jr. in the midst of a sermon
Today we think of Martin Luther King Jr. as a man who has always been a shining light in the world of Civil Rights, however it wasn't until the late 1950s that he became a well known figure.
When Rosa Parks, secretary of the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a Montgomery bus and was arrested King helped organize a boycott of the Montgomery Bus system.
King was the leader and official spokesman of the protest which lasted for more than a year, pushing him into the national spotlight.
New York City views, Plaza buildings from Central Park taken on February 12, 1933
New York City is a place that's constantly in flux. It's always changing, going up and going down. The Burroughs fill up with new faces, they change their genetic makeup, but it's always a fascinating place. A city of reinvention, inspiration, and discovery.
The skyline of the Big Apple is made up of buildings from different eras, with may seem like a patchwork of architecture, but when they're viewed together they become a single beautiful tapestry.
In 1933 Manhattan was still an understated place, although the city was under construction and developing into a city that would soon be unrecognizable.
Nikola Tesla in his office at 8 West 40th Street, New York City in 1916
In spite of his pure genius and endless well of inventions, Nikola Tesla never had it easy. In the early 20th century he was constantly creating but wasn't able to capitalize on his intellect. 1916 saw Tesla fall deep into bankruptcy due to the massive overhead for his laboratory. More often than not he crossed the street to Bryant Park to feed the pigeons instead of inventing.
At the end of the year he was awarded the Gold Edison Medal for or his discoveries in the field of polyphase and high-frequency currents. He finally received the award at a ceremony at the American Institute of Electrical Engineers on May 18, 1917.
Oregon, August 1939. Unemployed lumber worker goes with his wife to the bean harvest. Social Security number tattooed on his arm identifies him as Thomas Cave
Everyone born in the United States today receives a Social Security Number at birth. With that number you can pretty much do whatever you need to in life - get a job, pay taxes, go to school, etc. But in the early days of the 20th century that wasn't the case.
The Social Security Index only began a few months before this photo was taken. As a part of the New Deal programs that rose under the Roosevelt Administration, the SSI created general welfare for people who were entered into the system.
The one catch was that you had to remember your Social Security Number. Rather than commit the number to memory, Thomas Cave had it tattooed on his arm.
The Runaway, 1958
What a time... This photo shows a more precious era when it wasn't so scary for a child to be out on the street away from their family. Anyone who grew up in a small town remembers knowing the names and faces of pretty much everyone even from a young age.
Not only does having that information coded into your brain make it hard to "run away," but it makes it easy to see soda shoppe worker and know that you're in good hands.
It's likely that this young boy spent a few hours out on the town, he maybe even got some ice cream, before he was escorted home to his worried parents.
Rosa Parks & Martin Luther King Jr. in Montgomery, Alabama, 1955
Four days after Rosa Parks was arrested and fined for refusing to give up her bus seat to a white man in Montgomery, Alabama, the first large scale U.S. demonstration against segregation began. Starting on December 5, 1955, African American leaders across Montgomery urged the approximately 40,000 black bus riders to walk to work or carpool... and that's just what they did.
The head of the Montgomery Improvement Association, a 26 year old Martin Luther King Jr. elected to stay off the busses until the city met the demands of the people. The city refused to comply with their calls for decency, and for more than a year they lost 75% of their revenue.
On June 5, 1956, a Montgomery federal court ruled that any law requiring racially segregated seating on buses was in violation of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Supreme Court upheld the decision on December 20, 1956, and busses were integrated one day later.
Winston Churchill & Charlie Chaplin, on the set of “City Lights” September 24, 1929
It's hard to put Chaplin into context for modern audiences, but in the early 20th century he was basically Tom Cruise. He was so famous that world leaders and Nobel Prize winners wanted to get to know him and have their photos taken in his presence.
In spite of their jovial nature in this photo, Churchill and Chaplin weren't instant friends. Not only were their political natures at odds with one another, but after spending a dinner party together Churchill was ready to write a script about Napoleon for the Little Tramp. He reportedly said:
Think of its possibilities for humour. Napoleon in his bathtub arguing with his imperious brother who’s all dressed up, bedecked in gold braid, and using this opportunity to place Napoleon in a position of inferiority. But Napoleon, in his rage, deliberately splashes water over his brother’s fine uniform and he has to exit ignominiously from him. This is not alone clever psychology. It is action and fun.
This photograph of Isambard Kingdom Brunel was taken in front of the launching chains of the SS Great Eastern
Not just a man who fancies standing in front of sets of giant chains, Isambard Kingdom Brunel was recognized as one of the most ingenious and prolific figures in engineering history during his lifetime.
Brunel was an English civil engineer who changed the face of England during the Industrial Revolution with his dockyards, propellor driven steam ships, and public transport designs.
Even though many of Brunel's projects weren't always as finished on time or at all, they always included innovative solutions to engineering problems. His engineering feats made him so important to England that in 2002 he was voted number two on a list of the 100 greatest Britons.
Leo Tolstoy - Russian writer, regarded as one of the greatest authors of all time. 1908
Known as one of the greatest authors of all time, Leo Tolstoy is a Russian author most well known for his profound novels of epic length like War & Peace and Anna Karenina. He believed in nonviolent resistance and put those beliefs into his work. The fact that he was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize multiple times throughout his life without ever winning is one of the biggest blights against the Nobel community to this day.
By the end of Tolstoy's life he was writing in favor of India's bid to gain independence from Britain. When Gandhi read a copy of Tolstoy's A Letter to a Hindu in 1909 the two began a letter writing partnership that lasted until Tolstoy's death a year later.
US Marine running through Japanese fire on Okinawa, Japan, June 7, 1945
The Battle of Okinawa, fought from April 1945 to June of the same year was the final major battle of World War II. It was also one of the most chaotic and bloody.
Beginning on Easter Sunday, the Navy’s Fifth Fleet and more than 180,000 U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps troops came down hard on the Japanese island where the members of the Allied troops faced kamikaze fighters, nasty weather, and fierce combat in every respect.
Under the belief that Americans were fighting a take no prisoners battle, many Japanese citizens took their own lives rather than turn themselves over to the U.S. military. The battle came to an end when General Ushijima and his Chief of Staff, General Cho, committed ritual suicide on June 22.
Both sides bore massive losses in this battle, with the Americans losing over 49,000 men and the Japanese losing 110,000.