welcome home parade

WWII in Color Part 2

Part 1 // Part 3

Brazilian digital artist Marina Amaral combines her passion for art and history by colorizing black and white photographs.

At least 3000 Indian soldiers were organized into an armed brigade under the German Wehrmacht in 1942 and they were known as the Free Indian Legion.

Home Army soldiers Henryk Ożarek “Henio” (left) holding a Vis pistol and Tadeusz Przybyszewski “Roma” (right) firing a Błyskawica submachine gun, from “Anna” Company of the “Gustaw” Battalion fighting on Kredytowa-Królewska Street, 3 October 1944.

German paratroopers wave to a Ju-87 dive bomber, May 1940.

Viewed through the window of a wrecked building, a Marine gun crew set up behind abandoned enemy truck, fires at Japanese hiding in the debris of the town of Garapan, administrative center of Saipan, June 1944.

Marine identified as Sgt Angelo Klonis smoking a cigarette during the final days of fighting to gain control of the island of Saipan from occupying Japanese forces during WWII, 1944.

Patton during a welcome home parade in Los Angeles, June 9, 1945.

Time (In 12 Parts) Fan Art Album to the tune of Electric Light Orchestra
For Successor Challenge

Track 10: 21st Century Man

“Though you ride on the wheels of tomorrow, you still wander the fields of your sorrow.”

Seifer Almasy: 

Aw man, look at this! A Welcome Home parade from the Disciplinary Committee! I can’t even believe it. I’m here, alive. You’re alive. We’re all alive. My brain is fried, but- Fujin, are you CRYING? Stop that, really, doesn’t suit you at ALL. Raijin, you look like you are going to take a shit. Really. You guys need to quit your blubbering, we are ALIVE.

Jesse Owens, American Hero

The new biographical movie about Jesse Owens, Race, will be released in theaters this Friday, February 19th. The title has a double meaning – alluding to Owens’ historic record breaking feats he performed at the 1936 Berlin Olympics as well as his identity as an African American, which presented hurdles as a citizen of the United States.

Photograph of Olympian Jesse Owens, NAID 595375

Jesse Owens was born in Oakville, Alabama in 1913. In the 1920s, his family relocated to Cleveland, Ohio as part of the Great Migration. After a very successful track career in high school (where he helped his team win a national title and set world records), Owens was heavily recruited by many colleges due to his athletic prowess. Jesse Owens decided to run track at The Ohio State University, where, although he was the track star, campus segregation barred him and other African American athletes from living on campus and traveling on the same bus to track meets. In spite of these and other hardships, Jesse Owens earned the title of “fastest man on Earth” at a Big Ten meet in which he broke three world records (long jump, 220 yard sprint, and 220 hurdles) and tied the world record for the 100 yard dash.

Next came the 1936 Olympics, taking place in Berlin, Germany. These Olympic games were met with controversy in the United States. Many athletes and supporters were concerned that participation would send the message that the US supported Hitler’s regime; and on the other side, many wanted to go to prove the idea of Aryan supremacy wrong. With four gold medals won in the 100 meter, 200 meter, long jump, and the 4×100 relay – Jesse Owens overwhelmingly showed the world the error in the thought of Aryan superiority. Owens excellent showing and winning four gold medals was not matched until Carl Lewis won gold in the same events at the 1984 Olympics.

Jesse Owens Olympic glory was celebrated around the world, his dominance at the games making him arguably the most famous Olympian. When Owens returned home, he was met with the mixed bag of treatment and courtesy afforded to an African American living in the US. From the series Franklin D. Roosevelt President’s Official Files, 1933-1945 (NAID 567634) there are numerous letters and telegrams expressing enthusiasm and glee for how the “fastest human” will be welcomed and celebrated when he gets home. One telegram, from New York City, announces that “Jesse Owens has been officially selected to March at the head of the American Olympic in the welcome home parade up Broadway,” and the Good Neighbor League “would be honored to carry on by presenting your greetings to these great athletes.”

Jesse Owens nor any of the other persons of color that won medals for the United States during the 1936 Olympics were invited to the White House to be received by President Roosevelt. A myth grew out of the games stating that a humiliated Adolf Hitler refused to shake hands with Owens. Owens himself addressed the “snub” myth: “I wasn’t invited to shake hands with Hitler, but I wasn’t invited to the White House to shake hands with the president, either.”

Owens remained a celebrated figure to the American public, however, and in 1976, he received the highest civilian honor – the Presidential Medal of Freedom, given at the White House by President Gerald Ford.

Keep reading at Jesse Owens, American Hero | Rediscovering Black History