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Los Angeles Councilman Tom Bradley sits at his desk in the City Hall. He thinks he lost the mayoral runoff election because Mayor Sam Yorty frightened voters by pointing out that Bradley is a black., June 5, 1969
Vintage wire photograph with applied pigment on paper

Creation Place: North America
Technique: Photography
Credit Line: Restricted gift of Michael Mattis and Judy Hochberg in honor of Myrlie Evers-Williams.
Accession Number: P2021.13.260

Commentary
Race Issue Defeated Him Says Bradley: Councilman Tom Bradley sits at his desk in the City Hall in Los Angeles. He told an interviewer he thinks he lost the mayoral runoff election because Mayor Sam Yorty frightened voters late in the campaign by pointing out that Bradley is a black. Yorty won a third term in City Hall by defeating Bradley in the May 27 runoff.

Thomas Bradley (1917-1998) was an American politician and police officer who served as the 38th mayor of Los Angeles from 1973 to 1993. He was the first and (thus far) only black mayor of Los Angeles. His 20 years in office mark the longest tenure by any mayor in the city's history. Bradley's election as mayor in 1973 made him the second black mayor of a major U.S. city. He retired in 1993, after his approval ratings began dropping after the 1992 Los Angeles Riots. Bradley, a Democrat, also ran for Governor of California in 1982 and 1986, but was defeated both times by Republican candidate George Deukmejian. The racial dynamics that appeared to underlie his narrow and unexpected loss in 1982 gave rise to the political term "the Bradley effect." In 1985, Bradley was awarded the Spingarn Medal from the NAACP.

Marks
On recto: typewritten title and date.
On verso: typewritten title, date stamps and newspaper caption affixed.

Materials
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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