Vintage Photos Reveal A Different Side To History Than You Already Know

WORLD HISTORY | September 12, 2019

Written by Jacob Shelton

When a photo captures something really brilliant it’s able to provide context for a specific moment in history, while giving insight into the modern world. Sometimes the photos capture a majestic, life affirming flash, and other times shots like the ones you’ll see today show that there’s not much difference between and the royal family or a young person growing up in the segregated south.

The photos and stories collected here provide fascinating nuance to points in time that are just blips in our history books. These photos show that everyone has a story, they just need someone to tell it. Read on and enjoy. 

Rick Rescorla saved 2,700 people from the South Tower on 9/11

source: instagram

It’s an understatement to say that September 11, 2001 was a national tragedy. In just a few hours 2,977 people lost their lives during a coordinated terrorist attack on New York City and the Pentagon, but there could have been a greater loss had the late Rick Rescorla, director of security at Morgan Stanley not disobeyed Port Authority orders and evacuated the South Tower as soon as the North Tower was hit. Rescorla managed to save all but six of the company's 2,687 employees, he passed away as the tower collapsed.

Rescorla was born in born in Cornwall, England, and was a fighter his entire life. He served as a U.S.-commissioned officer during Vietnam where he earned the Purple Heart and the Silver Star. According to his wife Susan, Rescorla called her in the middle of his daring evacuation to tell her what was happening and that he had to risk his life. Dan Hill, a friend of Rescorla’s who served with him in Vietnam told the New Yorker

People like Rick, they don’t die old men. They aren’t destined for that and it isn’t right for them to do so. It just isn’t right, by God, for them to become feeble, old, and helpless sons of b*tches. There are certain men born in this world, and they’re supposed to die setting an example for the rest of the weak bastards we’re surrounded with.

On September 11, 2019, Rescorla was announced as a Presidential Citizen Medal honoree for his extraordinary sacrifice.

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Jacob Shelton


Jacob Shelton is a Los Angeles based writer. For some reason this was the most difficult thing he’s written all day, and here’s the kicker – his girlfriend wrote the funny part of that last sentence. As for the rest of the bio? That’s pure Jacob, baby. He’s obsessed with the ways in which singular, transgressive acts have shaped the broader strokes of history, and he believes in alternate dimensions, which means that he’s great at a dinner party. When he’s not writing about culture, pop or otherwise, he’s adding to his found photograph collection and eavesdropping on strangers in public.