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35 Awesome Historical Pictures That Will Make Your Day

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By Augustine Mbam - - 5 Mins Read

When you try reading a story about something that happened in the past, it is usually filled with dry explanations of what happened without giving you a visual explanation. 

With famous historical pictures, you don't need to imagine how things happened in the past as you can see exactly what happened. For instance, it is better to see a photo illustration of what happened in World War 2 than to narrate it in an uninteresting article.

Below, you will get a fun-filled gallery of famous historical pictures of things that happened many years ago.

1. The First Black Girl To Attend All-White High School

The photo of the first black girl who attended an all-white school in the United States at Charlotte's Harry Harding High School in 1957.

Her name was Dorothy Counts, and she was taunted and teased by her white male peers in the picture. 

This picture is quite iconic as it shows a time when the United States was going through one of the most revolutionary times.

2. Jewish Prisoners Liberated 

The photo above shows Jewish prisoners liberated from the death train in 1945. 

The release of the Jewish prisoners occurred when World War 2 was coming to an end after the defeat of the Germans. 

The photo shows a picture of a mother and her child and other people behind them running out of a train.

3. A photo of a German Refusing to do a Nazi Salute 

This photo shows a German man who refused to do the Nazi salute when Hitler took over in 1936.

This photo was taken after Hitler took over Germany and became their chancellor almost a decade before World War 2. 

Many people in the picture did the Nazi Salute, but the man refused to participate. Such actions at that time held heavy punishments, but the brave lad seemed to have damned all consequences.

4. Harold Whittles 

The first time Harold Whittles heard sound for the first time was in 1974. For the first time, the young boy heard a sound; the feeling was strange, seemingly surreal.

The photo showed how shocked he was as he experienced what it felt like to hear a sound. 

As one of the rare historical pictures, this image was captured by a photographer named Jack Bradley. After capturing the image, it was first published in a 1974 magazine called Reader's Digest. 

5. Eiffel Tower Under German Occupation 

 A  picture of when the Germans were occupying the Eiffel tower in 1941. This was after the Germans attacked France in 1940 and occupied the city

It is one of the most famous historical pictures that was taken during World War 2. 

The translation of the words written on the flag is " Germany is victorious on all fronts."

6. Picture of a Young Adolf 

A young Adolf Hitler was caught on camera cheering the start of World War 1 in 1914. The picture shows a young man with a mostache that looks very much like Adolf Hitler.

Hitler was among a massive German crowd in front of the Munich Feldherrenhalle, waving his hands during the start of the WW1 or Great War. 

Many people perceive the photo as a forgery as they claim that Hitler didn't have a mustache then. But we can never tell; the striking resemblance is enough to make convince some people.

7. Japanese Soldiers in a Sinking Ship 

The crew of a Japanese carrier named Zuikaku gave one final Banzai cheer before the ship sank in 1944. 

One of the rare historical pictures to come out of World War 2. 

The photo showed how dedicated soldiers were during World War 2. Many of the soldiers died in action while defending their country. 

8. A Picture of Jennie Mac Gregory Under Arrest 

A picture of Jennie Mac Gregory taken when she was arrested for selling alcoholic beverages by the Minneapolis police in 1924.

The equipment she used while illegally selling this alcohol should have been used as life-preserving flasks. 

9. The First Atomic Bomb

A picture of the first atomic bomb that was made in 1945. The informal name of this atomic bomb was The Gadget

This first atomic bomb was detonated at the Jornada del Muerto desert. The wirings of the bomb were done externally as well.

The code name of the detonation of this nuclear bomb was Trinity, and the United States army conducted it in 1945.

10. A boxing match Aboard the U.S.S 

A picture of a boxing match that took place aboard the U.S.S. New York in 1899. According to experts, the match was said to have taking place "somewhere in the Pacific".

A large number of sailors came to watch the fight take place at that time. Apparently, using these mock matches to entertain themselves at sea.

The picture shows a group of sailors and officials who are enjoying a boxing match between two males with a referee behind them. 

11. A Jewish Woman Concealing her Face 

A photo of a Jewish woman concealing her face as she sat on a park bench marked "only for Jews" in Austria in 1938.

The Jews in Austria within this period faced antisemitism and persecution. Several Jewish organizations at that time tried to fight back the prejudice but the strategies didn't work.

This photo marked a period when Germany and its Allies tried to push the Jews out of their economy by stealing their wealth and separating them. 

12. A Graffiti at the Reichstag 

After taking Berlin in May 1945, Soviet troops drew much graffiti in the Reichstag. 

They wrote different things ranging from how they felt about Germans to their names and hometowns on the walls. 

The German building remained like that until it was about to be renovated in the 1960s. 

13. Hitler’s Doctor 

A photo of Eduard Bloch, the Jewish physician of the Hitler family who the German leader called "a noble Jew) in 1938.

Eduard Bloch was the family doctor of Hitler and was dubbed the one that saved the life of Hitler when he was young and treated his mother too. 

During World War 1 and 2, Eduard Bloch was treated well despite being a jew at that time. 

14. Vladimir Lenin 

The photo is the last image of the father of Soviet Russia, Vladimir Lenin, in 1923. 

He was completely mute in the picture after suffering three strokes. 

Vladimir Lenin is known as the father of Soviet Russia, who served as the first head of government immediately after Russia founded the Soviet Union from 1922 to 1924.

15. US Coast Guard Cutter Spencer

A rare historical picture of the US Coast Guard Cutter Spencer destroying the Nazi submarine in 1943.

USCGC Spencer (WPG-36)was a treasury class cutter that was used during World War 2 and named after the US Treasury Secretary John Spencer.

It had a length of 327 feet and its beam was at 41 feet. It was commissioned in 1937 and was first used as a search and rescue vessel off Alaska's fishing grounds.

16. Auschwitz concentration camp

A rare photo of Hungarian Jews being selected by the Nazi soldiers to be taken into the gas chamber. 

Inside the gas chambers, they were gassed to death at the Auschwitz concentration camp in 1944.

The Auschwitz concentration camps were made up of over 40 extermination camps that Nazi Germany used to kill the Jewish people. 

17. A Public Execution 

In this picture, the last public execution by Guillotine in 1939 took place in France. 

A guillotine is a device that is designed for the public execution of people by beheading them. 

The criminal on whom this device was last used publicly was Eugen Weidmann, who was a German serial killer. 

18. A Group picture of Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Bob Dylan

This is a rare picture of Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Bob Dylan at a birthday party in 1972.

The trio are part of the 'Rolling Stones'. They had several classic rock songs like "Sympathy for the Devil".

Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Bob Dylan were both singers and songwriters who wrote some iconic songs. 

19. Marilyn Monroe 

Taken in 1954, Marilyn Monroe was shooting her iconic scene on the Seven Year Itch. 

The picture was taken in front of a large crowd to create hype for the movie. 

Marilyn Monroe is an American actress who was popular for playing in comedy shows such as the "blonde bombshell."

20. Tsar Nicholas II and Anastasia 

A somewhat inappropriate picture of Tsar Nicholas II teaching his daughter, Grand Duchess Anastasia, how to smoke.

Anastasia was born in 1901 and was the fourth daughter of Tsar Nicholas. Her parents were disappointed she was a girl as they had hoped for a boy.

Tsar Nicholas II was the last emperor of Russia and is celebrated by the Russian Orthodox Church as Saint Nicholas, the Passion Bearer. 

21. Eye Carving at Mount Rushmore 

A photo of an artist carving an eye on Mount Rushmore in the 1930s. 

Mount Rushmore National Memorial features a colossal sculpture of four presidents of the United States. 

President Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and George Washington were the four presidents carved out of this mountain. 

22. First Banana Norway 

This photo was taken when people brought the first batch of bananas to Norway in 1905.

The bananas weighed about 3,000 kilos, and one of the people in the picture is the founder of the biggest fruit importer in Norway called Bama. 

Norway has the record as the second country in Europe to import bananas to their country after the United Kingdom. 

23. Young Winston Churchill 

A very rare and uncommon photo of Winston Churchill when he was still a young boy in 1895.

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was born in 1874 and was a soldier and prime minister of the United Kingdom. 

He was the one who took the United Kingdom to World War 2 from 1940 to 1945.

24. Painting the Eiffel Tower 

A photo of painters who were painting the Eiffel tower in 1932.

The pictures below are all from the National Library of France, depicting the hard work people put in to ensure that the Eiffel tower was thoroughly painted. 

The Eiffel tower comprises more than eighteen thousand parts and is joined by over 2 million rivets. So it took a while for the whole body to be painted at that time. 

25. People Boarding a Ship After the Titanic Sank

After the unfortunate event of the Titanic, this is a photo of survivors boarding the Carpathia in 1912.

The RMS Titanic was a British passenger liner that sank in the Northern Atlantic Ocean on April 15th, 1912. 

The ship sank after hitting an iceberg during a trip across the Atlantic Ocean after spending less than a year at sea. 

26. Mona Lisa 

After World War 2, this is a photo of when Da Vinci's Mona Lisa was returned to the Louvre. 

A group of organized people known as the Monument Men saved the Mona Lisa painting and others from destruction. 

It was top of Hitler's wishlist to steal the Mona Lisa painting and other notable artworks from enemy countries. This is surely one of the most famous historical pictures in the world. 

27. An Anxious Mother and a Returning Prisoner of War 

A very sad picture of a mother showing a picture of her son to a returning prisoner of war in 1947.

Apparently, the despairing mother hoped that her son was still alive and had been seen by any of the captives from war.

Those who returned after being prisoners of war were very lucky as they underwent several inhuman treatments. Some of them were starved, beaten, and sent to work at mines. 

28.  Frida Kahlo as Boy 

A picture of Frida Kahlo when she was dressed as a boy in 1924.

Frida Kahlo was a Mexican painter born in 1907 and died in 1954 at the age of 47. 

Frida Kahlo was a relatively unknown painter whose works were rediscovered by historians and political activists in the 1970s. 

29. A Wounded Dog in Combat 

A wounded dog was injured during combat on the Orote Peninsula in 1944.

The Marine Corps had decided to use dogs during the war to see if they were effective. Over 350 war dogs were used during this operation, with about 20 wounded and 25 killed. 

Dogs helped the military men to find snipers, search out caves, and detect an enemy's presence. 

30. A Child Meeting Her Father 

The first time a child had met her German father since she was one, and the father was a soldier who was returning to his family in 1956.

Many young children never had to meet their fathers who left them for war when many of the children were in their cradle.

In the picture, a child can be seen crying as she meets her middle-aged father, who is probably returning home from the War. 

31. People wearing Hats in New York 

This is a picture of a time when wearing hats was the next big thing in New York in 1930.

Hats were a big thing in New York until the 1960s, and anyone going out without a hat was equivalent to going out without shoes. 

This picture was captured by a photographer named Margaret Bourne-White, who shot the image for a FORTUNE magazine Story. 

32. Vladimir Komarov Remains 

A terrible picture of the remains of a Russian astronaut named Vladimir Komarov, who fell from space in 1967.

Vladimir Komarov is a Russian astronaut who died when a parachute that was supposed to deploy him to earth failed to launch. 

The death of this astronaut generated nationwide mourning in Russia, and he was posthumously awarded the Order of Hero of the Soviet Union. 

33. The Beautiful Suicide 

One of the most famous historical pictures in the world, and the story behind it is rather sad. 

It was termed the most beautiful suicide and was a picture of Evelyn McHale after falling from the Empire State Building in 1947.

Evelyn McHale was an American bookkeeper who committed suicide by falling off the 86th floor of the Empire State Building. Robert Wiles captured her picture. 

34. A Lesbian Couple 

A lesbian couple was caught on camera at Le Monocle, Paris, in 1932.

Lesbianism had gained momentum during the 1920s, and couples had bars where they could go and have a good time. 

In the picture, the lesbian couple was captured at Le Monocle, accredited as one of the first lesbian nightclubs. 

35.  A Dead Mafia Boss 

A photo of a mafia boss who was named Joe Masseria as he lay dead on the floor of a Brooklyn restaurant while holding the ace of spades in 1931.

Joe was an Italian-American Mafia boss in New York. He is remembered as the boss of the Genovese crime family. Joe is said to have been murdered after a mafia war in New York.

Joe Masseria was also known as Joe, the Boss, and had led a large New York mafia family in the 1920s.