by Justin Crockett

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 Many times, we come to understand significant events in history by the visual documents that are taken during them. Occasionally, whoever is snapping photos of said event just happened to be in the right place at the right time, and we can see a record of what was going on beforehand, as if something was just in the air….

#9. Babe Ruth Called Shot

A lot of debate still rages as to whether the famed Babe Ruth ever pointed to the bleachers to signify he was about to hit a home run. There is however, this picture….

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…and then he hit a home run.

#8. Fall of The Soviet Union

In 1991, the Soviet Union dissolution occurred after many republics in the union declared their independence. This photograph shows the last time the Soviet flag flew over the Kremlin. The entire government would be turned over the next day.

Pictures of The Fall of the Soviet Union, 1991 (43)

#7. Abbey Road

The picture you know:

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During the Beatles’ photo sessions, photographer Ian McMillan captured the band getting ready to make their famous stroll across Abbey Road.

The picture you don’t know:

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That there is a couple of Beatles chillin’. Paul seems to be cleaning Ringo’s shoulders much like a mother ape would.

#6. Icelandic Volcano

In 2010, a major volcano erupted in the  Eyjafjallajökull region in Iceland. The event was so massive it caused the most air travel disruption since WWII.

Witness as Zuul returns to Earth:

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#5. John Lennon’s Killer

Mark David Chapman, the man who would go on to assassinate John Lennon, staked out the former Beatle’s residence for the better part of the day, even going so far as to get an album autographed by Lennon. This happened just hours before Lennon was gunned down.

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You can see his doughy peer right to Lennon’s left.

#4. Archduke Franz Ferdinand

The assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand is widely known as a major cause of the first World War. This picture of the Archduke and his wife walking to their vehicle was snapped 5 minutes before he was killed.

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#3. The Titanic Before Sinking

Father Francis Browne was an Irish priest who was a passenger aboard the doomed Titanic ship. He also dabbled in photography, his greatest work being the final pictures of the Titanic before it sunk into the Atlantic Ocean.

Fr. Browne's Last Picture of the Titanic

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(Icebergs in the distance, possibly the ones that caused the sinking)

#2. Lincoln Just Before The Gettysburg Address

On November 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln arrived at a Civil War battlefield to commemorate a war memorial and cemetery. Just after these pictures were taken, Lincoln would stand in front of some 20,000 people and deliver the Gettysburg Address.

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#1. Conrad Schumann

Conrad Schumann was an East German policeman who famously defected to West Germany during the construction of the Berlin Wall. Here he is busting ass out of town:

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Here he is just prior to busting ass, quietly gazing at a group of house-fraus:

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But when he saw that he could make a clean getaway to West Germany, he, you guessed it, busted ass over there.

His exploits will forever be remembered as a reminder of the Cold War and its divisions, even forged in statue, with the iconic “Air Schumann”:

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