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Japanese Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda, who hid in the Philippine jungles for nearly thirty years, salutes after emerging on Sunday, March 11, 1974
Vintage wire photograph on paper
9 11/16 x 6 13/16 in. (24.61 x 17.3 cm)

Creation Place: Asia
Technique: Photography
Credit Line: Restricted Gift of Michael Mattis, Judy Hochberg, and Daniel Mattis, in honor of Kathleen Stewart Howe
Accession Number: P2019.21.481

Illustrated: Onoda, Hiroo. No Surrender: My Thirty-Year War. US Naval Institute Press, 1999.
Associated Press ID # 090524037638.

Finally Gives Up: Japanese Lieutenant Hiroo Onoda, who has hidden in the Philippine jungles for nearly thirty years, salutes after emerging on Sunday. He told newsmen he had not surrendered sooner because: “I had not received the order.” At right is Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Toshio Urabe. An unidentified Philippine officer at left holds the sword Onoda brought out of the jungle, March 11, 1974.

Hirō "Hiroo" Onoda (Onoda Hirō, 19 March 1922 – 16 January 2014) was an Imperial Japanese Army Intelligence officer who fought in World War II and was a Japanese holdout who did not surrender at war's end in August 1945. After the war ended, Onoda spent 29 years holding out in the Philippines until his former commander traveled from Japan in 1974 to formally relieve him from duty by order of the Emperor. He held the rank of second lieutenant in the Imperial Japanese Army. He was the penultimate Japanese soldier to surrender, with Teruo Nakamura surrendering later in 1974.

Sheet: 10 3/8 x 7 15/16

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: 9 11/16 x 6 13/16 in. (24.61 x 17.3 cm)

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