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Flower Power

Written by: George Chittenden : 20 Oct 2019

This famous photo was taken on October 21st, 1967, during the National Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam's March on the Pentagon. The picture features a protester placing carnations into the barrels of rifles belonging to the 503rd Military Police Battalion. It was taken by photographer Bernie Boston for the Washington Star newspaper and was nominated for the 1967 Pulitzer Prize.

The Pentagon, Arlington County, Virginia, 1967

The Pentagon, Arlington County, Virginia, 1967

The expression ‘Flower Power’ had been coined two years earlier by American Beat poet Allen Ginsberg to transform war protests. Hippies embraced the symbolism by dressing in bright coloured clothing with embroidered flowers, wearing flowers in their hair and even handing out flowers to the public. So, who is the young man placing the carnations? His name’s George Edgerly Harris III, and he was an eighteen-year-old actor from New York.

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