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Unknown Photographer

Famed jazz trumpeter Louis Armstrong gives vent to his anger on his arrival in Copenhagen, Denmark. He talked about police action against black people in Alabama., March 10, 1965
Vintage wire photograph on paper
5 3/8 x 7 9/16 in. (13.65 x 19.21 cm)

Creation Place: North America
Technique: Photography
Credit Line: Restricted gift of Michael Mattis and Judy Hochberg in honor of Myrlie Evers-Williams.
Accession Number: P2021.13.239

Armstrong Blows Hot On Alabama: Louis Armstrong, famed jazz trumpeter, gives vent to his anger on his arrival in Copenhagen, Denmark today as he talked about police action against black people in Alabama. The usually soft-spoken musician said, "They would beat Jesus if He was black and marched."

Louis Daniel Armstrong (1901-1971), nicknamed "Satchmo", "Satch", and "Pops", was an American trumpeter, composer, vocalist, and actor who was among the most influential figures in jazz. His career spanned five decades, from the 1920s to the 1960s, and different eras in the history of jazz. In addition to being an entertainer, Armstrong was a leading personality of the day. He was beloved by an American public that gave even the greatest black performers little access beyond their public celebrity. He was able to live a private life of access and privilege afforded to few other blacks during that era. He generally remained politically neutral, which at times alienated him from members of the black community, who looked to him to use his prominence with white America to become more of an outspoken figure during the Civil Rights Movement. When Armstrong did speak out, it made national news, such as when Armstrong criticized President Eisenhower, calling him "two-faced" and "gutless" in 1957 because of his inaction during the conflict over school desegregation in Little Rock, Arkansas. As a protest, Armstrong canceled a planned tour of the Soviet Union on behalf of the State Department saying: "The way they're treating my people in the South, the government can go to hell" and that he could not represent his government abroad when it was in conflict with its own people. The FBI kept a file on Armstrong for his outspokenness about integration.

On recto: typewritten title and date.
On verso: manuscript title and Associated Press stamp.

Wire photographs were originally transmitted over phonelines, then later, by satellite. They were first used in the early 1920s. Associated Press became a leader with this. After pigment touch-ups, etc., the print is put into a drum (like a drum scanner). The image gets converted into audio tones that are transmitted. The tones are received and beamed onto photo-sensitive paper. Wire photographs are copies without originals---they are hybrid, transmitted objects. (Britt Salvesen, Curator and Department Head, Photography Department, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, March 30-31, 2022)

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  • Image Dimensions: 5 3/8 x 7 9/16 in. (13.65 x 19.21 cm) Measured by Hudson, Karen
  • Sheet Dimensions: 6 9/16 x 8 7/16 in. (16.67 x 21.43 cm) Measured by Hudson, Karen

Your current search criteria is: Keyword is "IGE" and [Object]Display Artist is "Unknown Photographer".

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