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Picture This!: The Inside Story and Classic Photos of UPI Newspictures    by Gary Haynes order for
Picture This!
by Gary Haynes
Order:  USA  Can
Bulfinch, 2006 (2006)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

As I opened this wonderful book stuffed with photographs of the past, I was flooded with memories - I recognized so many of these images from the time they were published (hate to admit that).

I remember the headlines with Truman holding the newspaper with a huge smile on his face - Dewey Defeats Truman - when in actuality Truman won that race. And the poignant one from the Vietnamese War of a little girl running nude down a bombed out street with confusion and pain on her face, trying to escape the war that was none of her doing. How could anyone ever precipitate another war after viewing that?

Johnson taking the oath of office after Kennedy's assassination - the somber looks were called for but you have to wonder what was going through their heads. More final is the photo of Kennedy's rocking chair being removed from the White House. The hate on white faces as Elizabeth Eckford, in 1957, was turned away from Little Rock Central High after desegragation was put into place is hard to accept. As are the taunting smiles, again on white faces, as James Meredith goes to class in 1962.

The landing at Omaha Beach, where 2,200 American lives were lost on D-Day, turned the tide of the war. Do we never learn from past history? The signing of the peace treaty with Japan on the USS Missouri in 1945 is especially meaningful to me as I lost my mother's twin brother when MacArthur left the Phillipines in 1941. My uncle did not survive the prison camps. Photos from El Salvador again touched a soft spot in my heart as my granddaughter is from El Salvador. Her birth father was disappeared.

Enough of war. There are photos of well-known celebrities, movie stars and socialites alike - makes one wonder what happened to them. There's a little bit of everything (although I did notice that although wars are covered, there is not a mention of the police action in Korea). Picture This! is a wonderful book with which to idle some time away - maybe sitting in a rocking chair with a glass of a favorite wine to savor. It would make a great gift for that person who has everything.

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