A printed image of the most iconic photograph in military history, Joe Rosenthal’s Flag Raising on Iwo Jima, signed in the clear sky to the right of the outstretched hands of the Marines by John H. Bradley, whose son wrote “Flags of our Fathers.” Signed “John H. Bradley Ph(armacist) M(ate) 2/C”. The black and white photograph measures 7 inches wide by 8 inches high.
Bradley was a medic on Iwo Jima and one of the Marines who raised the flag on Mount Suribachi. Six Marines raised the second flag, the event memorialized by AP photographer Joe Rosenthal. All of the Marines quickly moved on in combat; three were killed before it was realized that this photograph was igniting a sense of purposefulness in the country. Bradley and two others, Gagnon and Ira Hayes, were located and brought to the United States for a bond drive, a drive which Bradley and Hayes found unnerving. Like all combat veterans they didn’t believe they had done anything special, and were no more deserving of being heralded than all the other Marines.
Hayes, an Indian, took to heavy drinking, and was granted his desire to return to combat where he felt more comfortable. Bradley held the group together thru the bond tour around the country. Hayes later died of alcoholism, Gagnon faded once the spot light was off, and Bradley never spoke of his experiences. He led a productive life and his son, after his death, wrote Flags of Our Fathers, in a journey to discover what his father did in the war. It later became a Clint Eastwood movie.
Recent photographic research has determined that two identifications of the six Marines were wrong and that Bradley didn’t know there were two flag raisings and assumed the one he participated in, the first, was the Rosenthal photograph.
Framed (in blue inner and outer mats with a silver frame) dimensions: 13 inches wide by 14 7/8 inches high.
This item is associated with these categories in our inventory:
- World War II