80 Interesting Historical Photos That Might Change Your Perspective On The Past

It is a bit surreal to think that while we can’t physically experience history because we’re born at a particular place and time, the power of technology has empowered us to see it, understand it and make conclusions from it.

Historical Capsule is a dedicated community only that pretty much does that—empowers people to do just that. Join us as we take a journey through time in the listicle of iconic historical photos below.

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#1 100,000 Iranian Women March Against The Hijab Law, Tehran, 1979

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#2 Lonnie Johnson, Inventor Of Super Soaker, 1992

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#3 Ruby Bridges, The First African-American To Attend A White Elementary School In The Deep South, 1960

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So, Historical Capsule is a subreddit that’s a “step into the past”. It’s an online depository for old and vintage photographs that tell stories from significant events and moments in history.

The subreddit is home to 50,000 members, being ranked in the top 3%, and encourages open discussion and celebration of all things history.

#4 A Lesbian Couple In Semi-Drag Wedding Attire. Kingdom Of Hungary, Budapest, 1920

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#5 A Former Slave Named Gordon Shows His Whipping Scars. Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 1863

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#6 Two Little Kids Dancing On The Streets Of New York City, C. 1940

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On the surface, history might sound like a dull and boring discipline. However, if you dig deeper into what it’s all about, you begin to understand just how much essence it has and how much it has to offer in general.

After all, history might be something that’s all about the past, but you’d be surprised just how transformative it might be.

#7 A Blind Muslim Named Muhammad Carrying His Best Friend A Paralyzed Christian Who Suffers From Dwarfism Named Samir, Damascus, Ottoman Syria, 1889

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#8 Elizabeth Eckford Ignores The Screams Of Students On Her First Day Integrated Into A Little Rock High School, 1957

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#9 Remember That Photo Of The Construction Workers Having Lunch On The Unfinished Empire State Building? Well Here’s The Photographer Charles Ebbets Taking That Photo, 1932

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History professor Mary Jo Festle wrote a piece on how history as a discipline transforms students. In it, she explained that since there isn’t realistically any empirical evidence of this hypothesis, she took it upon herself to figure it out.

She has asked nearly 60 of her students across 8 different sections of the small research seminars they hosted to give open-ended responses to prompts reflecting upon the change.

#10 Anne Frank’s Father Otto, Revisiting The Attic Where They Hid From The Nazis. He Was The Only Surviving Family Member

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#11 A Us Marine Gives A Cigarette To A Japanese Soldier Buried In The Sand. Iwo Jima, 1945

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#12 While Cleaning Up From The World Trade Centers Falling, Crews Found A Shipwreck 7ft Below The Foundation That Dated Back To 1773

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One of the main prompts was asking students to describe how their understanding of what history is changed during their studies.

A third of the students provided some form of “I now understand history is not just facts about names, dates, or a chronology of events.”

#13 Former Beauty Queen, Miss Wyoming Winner Joyce Mckinney Being Arrested By Police

After kidnapping Mormon missionary Kirk Anderson from his church, forcing him to be her sex slave for 3 days. 1977

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#14 An Undercover Police Officer Apprehends A Mugger On The New York Subway, 1985. Photo By Bruce Davidson

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#15 George Mclaurin, The First Black Man To Be Admitted To The University Of Oklahoma In 1948, Was Forced To Sit In A Corner Away From His Classmates

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The answers verified the idea that the interpretive nature of history is a crucial lesson that can be considered a threshold concept.

One student elaborated that they realized how much power historians actually have, i.e. the power to construct the past. History is dynamic and a point of debate as a lot of the unknown in it can be argued.

#16 Northumbrian Miner Sits Down To Eat His Evening Meal, 1937

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#17 Reporters Who Exposed The Watergate Scandal Watch President Nixon Resign, 1974

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#18 A Man Browsing For Books In Cincinnati’s Cavernous Old Main Library. The Library Was Demolished In 1955

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Another point to mention is that students didn’t see themselves as books full of facts and figures in history. It’s these same activities of interpreting and analyzing sources, conducting research, looking for influences and biases and challenging what has been read from a critical, multifaceted standpoint, that makes all the difference in the discipline.

#19 Last Four Couples In A Dance Marathon, Chicago, Circa 1930

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#20 Rat Pack At The Sands In Las Vegas, Circa 1960

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#21 The Microsoft Staff, 1978

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Another student pointed out that, before their studies, they enjoyed watching documentaries and furthering their knowledge that way. After them, however, it was an eye-opening experience to understand that they can now discover history for themselves, see how the evidence works and the puzzle pieces fall into place. There’s more of a hands-on approach than meets the eye.

#22 A Filipino-American Family Posing For A Family Portrait, Philippines, 1912

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#23 What Is Now The Fully Developed Las Vegas Strip, 1955

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#24 Greenpeace Tries To Stop Radioactive Waste From Being Dumped In The Ocean, 1982

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If anything, the mini study concluded that in 70% of all cases history topics were personally challenging in terms of values and assumptions about the world. Among these were themes and topics like gender and sexuality, religious history, the Holocaust as well as Nazism. A number of them touched upon issues of race and foreign policy, civil war and ideology.

#25 A Chinese Lady Whose Feet Were Bound From Childhood. Photo From The Late 1800s

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#26 An Unemployed Man Holding A Troubling Sign During The Great Depression, 1932

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#27 A True Friend. Taken In A New York Bus Terminal Just Before They Left For The Worsening Situation In The Pacific, 1941

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This ultimately led to some to openly express how challenging topics have made them better human beings. One pointed out how Islam studies brought to light racist assumptions. Another changed their opinion on same sex marriage after investigating sources from LGBTQIA+ people. It gave them perspective. Perspective that made them rethink what they thought before.

#28 The Rarely Seen Back Of The Hoover Dam Before It Was Filled With Water, 1936

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#29 Sharpshooter Annie Oakley Shooting Over Her Shoulder Using A Hand Mirror, Circa 1899

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#30 Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game In San Diego, 1992

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So, what are your thoughts on any of this? Has history changed you, and if so how? Or mayhaps you have an interesting historical story to tell that might fit this listicle. Whatever the case, share your takes and commentary in the comment section below!

And there’s plenty more historical content where that came from.

#31 A Skateboarder Zipping Through Central Park In The 1960s

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#32 A Starving Boy And A Missionary In Uganda, 1980. Mike Wells Took This Powerful Photograph Of A Catholic Missionary Holding The Hand Of A Starving Ugandan Boy

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#33 Allied Soldiers Mock Hitler Atop His Balcony At The Reich Chancellery, 1945

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#34 Mother Hides Her Face In Shame After Putting Her Children Up For Sale, Chicago, 1948

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#35 Cudjoe Kazoola Lewis: The Last Known Survivor Of The Atlantic Slave Trade Between Africa And North America. (Photo From The Early 1900s)

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#36 A 1912 Photo Shows A Woman Plugging In Her Electric Car

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#37 In 1963, Wives Say Goodbye To Their Loved Ones In The Navy

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#38 Navajo Youth Tom Torlino As He Entered The Carlisle Indian Industrial School In 1882, And Again 3 Years Later

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#39 A Soldier And His Two Girl Friends, Us, 1940s

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#40 An Unknown Woman Stands Close To A Tornado To Take A Photo, 1989

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#41 American Physicist Harold Agnew Holding The Core Of The Atomic Bomb They Killed 80,000 People In Nagasaki 1945

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#42 Greasers In New York City, 1950s

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#43 Following A 23-Hour (Successful) Heart Transplant, Dr. Religa Keeps An Eye On His Patient’s Vital Signs. In The Corner, His Assistant Is Sleeping, 1987

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#44 Mickey The Shoeshine Boy, New York, 1947. Photograph By Stanley Kubrick

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#45 View Of Boston, The Oldest Surviving Aerial Photograph Ever Taken. October 13th, 1860

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#46 A Salesman Has His Motorized Roller Skates Refueled. Connecticut, 1961

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#47 Depression-Era Portrait Of A Working-Class Couple, 1930s

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#48 Soviet Peasants Listen To The Radio For The First Time, 1928

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#49 Lenin After His Third Stroke, 1923. This Picture Was Prohibited In Ussr At The Time

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#50 Women In Bathing Suits Posing With A Prize Bull, Vancouver, 1927

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#51 A Father Looking For His Two Missing Sons That Went Missing During The Kosovo War In 1999

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#52 Joseph Goebbels, The Main Propagandist Of The Nazi Regime, Upon Finding Out His Photographer Was Jewish

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#53 In 1945 A B-25 Bomber Got Lost In The Fog And Crashed Into The 79th Floor Of The Empire State Building. 14 People Died In The Accident

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#54 Photo From The Restaurant Windows On The World, Which Sat Atop New York City’s World Trade Center’s North Tower, 1976

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#55 Anti British Propaganda, Japan 1941

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#56 A Young Private Waits On The Beach During The Marine Landing At Da Nang, 1965

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#57 French Girl Being Having Her Head Shaved For Having Sex With A German, Montélimar, France, 1944. Photograph By Smith

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#58 A Hippie Girl Selling Roadside Flowers In Oklahoma, 1973

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#59 People Stand By A Car Accident In Washington, D.c., 1921

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#60 A German Orphan Trying To Sell His Father’s Iron Cross For Cigarettes In Berlin, 1945

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#61 At 4:31 Am, An Unauthorized Photo Taken Of Stalin Inside Of The Kremlin Shows The Very Moment He Was Informed That Germany Had Began Their Invasion Of The Soviet Union. June 22, 1941

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#62 Jfk’s Funeral At The Capitol. November 1963

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#63 A Customer On The Internet At Burger King, 1998

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#64 Mickey And Minnie Mouse Costumes, 1930s

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#65 The Storyville Jazz Club, Copenhagen, Denmark, 1952

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#66 Children In Front Of The World’s Largest Log Cabin In Portland, Oregon, Us, 1938. Built In 1905 Burned, Down In 1964

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#67 Protester Guy Burmieux Encounters His Childhood Friend, Policeman Jean-Yvon Antignac, On April 6, 1972

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#68 Hanging Out On A Californian Beach, 1965

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#69 Tattooed Lady At The 1939 New York World’s Fair

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#70 Jack Wilson, The Most Obese Man In The World Plays A Chess Game Against A Skinny Man, 1932

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#71 One Of The Last Photos Taken On The Titanic, 1912

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#72 Circus Performer Jimmy Armstrong Having A Smoke Break. 1958

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#73 “If A Woman Needs It, Should She Be Spanked?” News Clipping From The New York Daily Mirror, C. 1950s

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#74 Princeton Sophomores Pose After A Brutal Snowball Fight, 1893

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#75 Drug Store, Detroit. 1955. Photo By Robert Frank

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#76 Two Men In A Pillory At The State Prison Of Bibb County, Georgia, 1937

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#77 An Extremely Happy Customer For The Release Of Windows ’95

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#78 Cigarettes Were Promoted As Being Good For Health, Till Early 1950s

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#79 The Hole Left By Flight 11 Crashing Into The North Tower Of The Wtc, 9/11/2001

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#80 The Highway Of Death, Officially Known As Highway 80. This Is The Result Of Us Forces Bombing Iraqi Forces, 1991

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Source: boredpanda.com

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