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10 Amazing Pictures from History and the Backstories Behind Them

Amazing Pictures from History

Pictures are a great source of capturing the best moments of life and keeping them forever. Some pictures hide the amazing stories which they only partially depict. To help you learn more about the interesting facts from history, we’re here with the 10 amazing pictures from history and the backstories behind them. Check these 10 amazing pictures from history and the backstories behind them.

1. In 1992, the newly independent and financially-strapped nation of Lithuania was looking to send their basketball team to the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. The popular music band, The Grateful Dead, help fund the team with a $5,000 check and asked their designer to send a box of tie-dyed t-shirts. The team made it to the games and won a bronze medal. 

Lithuania basketball team to the 1992 Barcelona Olympics
Image credits: nbcolympics.com/bleacherreport.com

The first picture among the 10 amazing pictures from history is of the Lithuanian’s basketball team. In 1991, the new country of Lithuania, which just got rid of a 50-year-long USSR rule, was looking for funds to send their basketball players to the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

They had their freedom at this moment but didn’t have enough money to send their men to the Olympics.  But on this, The Grateful Dead helped them. 

The PR Manager of The Grateful Dead, Dennis McNally, saw an article regarding the team’s efforts for fundraising and showed it to the band. They then decided that this was the best time to contribute to this cause. Jerry Garcia and his merry band sent them a $5,000 check that helped foot the bill for Lithuania’s Olympic basketball team.

Not only this, but they also sent a huge box of tie-dyed t-shirts and shorts for the players. The band’s own designer designed the outfit. The shirt was all white, having some very thin yellow, red, and green color lines on the neck and sleeves – the colors of Lithuania.  

Lithuanian basketball players gladly availed themselves of this opportunity and played so well that they won the bronze medal. The entire team then went up on the dais and accepted their medals. (1, 2)  

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2. In 1987, engineers in Alba Lulia moved an entire building of 80 flats on wheels. They used railway tracks and moved the building 180 feet away from its original position.  

Bilding in Alba Iulia, Romania, 1987
The apartment building right before being shifted into the new position 1978. Image credits: Historydaily.org

The second picture among the 10 amazing pictures from history is of a building that was relocated. On Wednesday, May 27, 1987, during the Romanian communist era, engineers in Alba Lulia moved an entire building of 80 flats that was 100 meters long.

They did so to make space for a renovation of Transylvania Boulevard.  The engineers split the building (7,600 tons) into two halves. They moved one side of the building to the right side of the boulevard and the other on the left.

All this was done by digging under the entire structure. They put railways and wheels to move the building 55 meters from its actual position. They used a network of hydraulic jacks placed under the framework and fixed to the structure to support its weight. 

The entire operation took less than six hours. None of the residents were harmed or evicted during the process. No pipelines or other wires (telephone, electricity, etc.) were cut while moving.

Residents enjoyed the whole process with a cup of coffee in their balconies, and one housewife claims that she put a glass of water on the edge of her balcony, and it didn’t spill a drop. This shows how smooth the operation was, regardless of being the fastest displacement ever.

(1, 2, 3

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3. On September 3, 1967, the Swedish government was out on a mission to change the habits of all motorists and cyclists. The day was known as “H-Day,” and the government made people drive on the right side of the road, just like the other European countries.   

Kungsgatan 3 september 1967
Image credits: Jacob Forsell/Scanpix via Wikimedia

Another picture from 10 amazing pictures from history is of the H-Day. The Swedish government was on a mission to change the lifetime habits of their people by making them drive on the right-hand side of the road. This catastrophic event took place on September 3, 1967.

The day was called “Högertrafikomläggningen” (right-hand traffic diversion) or “Dagen H” (H-Day). The government wanted to make their people drive on the same path as the other European neighbors and most countries of the world do – driving on the right-hand side of the road.  

Although the rule for driving in the country was to do so on the left, many car owners already had vehicles whose steering wheel was on the right side. Many people bought their cars from abroad, and reputable Swedish car manufacturers like Volvo decided to follow this trend.

However, due to the H-Day, every road sign, traffic light, and bus stop had to be changed. Hundreds of new buses were purchased, and the older ones were reconfigured to have doors on both sides. Overall, the project cost 628 million kronor ($72 million). (Source)

4. Bolaji Badejo, a 22-year-old boy from Nigeria, played the role of the xenomorph in Alien and terrified the audience. Due to his naturally extra long legs, he was the perfect fit for this role.   

Bolaji Badejo
Image credits: Mike Sibthorp via edition.cnn.com

Balaji Badejo’s picture is among the 10 amazing pictures from history. Balaji Badejo was a 22-year-old when he acted as the xenomorph in Alien. He was a Nigerian boy and was studying in London. One evening, he decided to go out and drink in Soho in 1979. Although he never acted in movies before, being 6 feet 10 inches feet tall, he grabbed the attention of a casting director. 

Director Ridley Scott asked if he wanted to work in the film industry, and he replied positively. From there, he became the Alien. Scott, in one interview, said that the boy had the figure of the Giacometti sculpture.   

In the movie, the xenomorph had an extended jaw that violently jutted out of its throat and a deadly whipping tail sticking out of its crotch. It even had no eyes. These features made it the terrifying creature that appeared on-screen. (1, 2   

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5. On July 24, 1950, German and American technology was combined to launch the first two-stage rocket from the United States. It was launched from Cape Canaveral, a place on the Atlantic coast of central Florida. 

First launch from Cape Canaveral
Image credits: Nasa.gov

It all happened during World War II when German rocket scientists and engineers with several V-22 ballistic missiles were captured by Americans. One part of Operation Paperclip was that all the specialists and their rockets were taken to Fort Bliss, Texas, near the newly built White Sands Proving Ground in New Mexico. There, the US Army guided them, and they continued their work on the rockets and missiles. 

Although the concept of a multi-stage rocket was not new, it was never tested before. They combined the V-2 missile as a first stage and a scaled-down version of a Corporal sounding rocket manufactured by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. Thus, they were successful in making the first working two-stage, liquid-fueled rocket. 

The V-2 with WAC (Without Attitude Control) Corporal on top was called the “Bumper.” The first six Bumpers were launched at White Sands in May and August 1948. The first two flights didn’t have WAC upper stages.

However, all four Bumper flights with the WAC failed due to different reasons. Engineers were successful on the fifth WAC Bumper flight on February 24, 1949. It reached a speed of 5,000 mph and an altitude of 244 miles. It was more than double the previous V-2 record of 110 miles. And thus, it became the first object to enter extra-terrestrial space. (Source)

Also read: 10 Simple Photographs With Mind-blowing Backstories

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