Look at each of the famous historical photos below. They’re real, right? Wrong. Each of these iconic pictures were edited after the fact. Some were made to look more appealing. Others were changed in order to re-write history altogether.
This famous photo from the Kent State University shooting in 1970 was published in Life magazine without the fence post.
When Hitler met with Leni Riefenstahl in 1937, Joseph Goebbels, his minister of propaganda, was edited out of the picture. No one is sure why.
Francis Blair was added to this photo of Civil War generals in 1865 from a completely separate picture.
Nope, that’s NOT Oprah. The body you see is Ann-Margaret’s and the person who first noticed was the designer of the dress.
The photo of the Iranian missle test in 2008 didn’t have enough drama for journalists, so extra missiles were photoshopped in.
Carlos Franqui was removed from most photos after he left Cuba, cut ties with Castro and signed a letter condemning the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.
This photo was taken during the Battle of Berlin on 2 May 1945 and was one of the most widely reprinted images of the war. When originally published in the Russian magazine Ogonyok, the image was altered to remove what appears to be a second watch from the right wrist of on of the Russian soldiers. The editor was concerned that the appearance of two watches might suggest that the soldier had looted one of them. The smoke in the background was also darkened.
Benito Mussolini felt that the image of him look more impressive, and perhaps less staged, with the removal of the man holding the horses reins.
This well known image of General Grant apparently in City Point, Virginia during the American Civil War is actually a a combination of 3 images: a portrait of Grant, a photograph of Major General Alexander M. McCook astride his horse, and captured confederate prisoners at the battle of Fisher’s Hill, VA. The discovery was made by researchers at the Library of Congress.
Lincoln never posed for this famous portrait of him. It was created (possibly after his death) by taking a photograph of Lincoln and putting it on a portrait of John Calhoun.
A tourist standing on a balcony on one of the twin towers was not there on 09/11/2001. The timestamp and plane were added later.
In 2009, the Israeli newspaper Yated Neeman published this version of a group photo of Netanyahu, the country’s newly elected Prime Minister, front left, with President Shimon Peres, front right, and members of Netanyahu’s new government. An unaltered version of the photo reveals that the newspaper has replaced the two female Cabinet members, Limor Livnat and Sofa Landver, with men’s faces.
Kim Jong Il wasn’t actually standing with the North Korean Troops in this picture. Analysts zeroed in on this area of the photograph, where portions of the reviewing stand can be seen in, while the quality of the wood or metal also seems to differ, suggesting that Kim was inserted into the photo after the fact.
This photo of Martha Stewart during her jail-time was actually a picture of her laughing at a separate award ceremony.
This iconic Abbey Road album cover was heavily edited. American publishers decided to remove the cigarette from Paul’s right hand without getting permission from him or Apple Records, which owns the right to the image. Said an Apple spokesman: “It seems these poster companies got a little carried away.”
Taken within seconds of the preceding photo, this frame reveals that Lenin was joined that day by fellow Central Committee members Leon Trotsky, who stands in hat and mustache on the stairs to the right of the podium, and Lev Kamenev, who stands behind him. Perceived by Stalin as rivals to his power, both men were ultimately purged and their contributions to the revolution largely eliminated from the historical record.
Sometimes, you think you know what happened. Then, you realize…nope.