• Sweden edition
 
'My dad is in famous NY skyscraper pic': Swede

'My dad is in famous NY skyscraper pic': Swede

Published: 07 Jan 2013 10:24 GMT+01:00
Updated: 07 Jan 2013 10:24 GMT+01:00

“I remember when dad and I went for a walk in the forest in the 1970s and he mentioned this amazing picture that was taken when he was building a skyscraper, and how much he wanted to see it,” Britt-Marie Johansson Duwfa told local newspaper Hallands-Posten.

She thinks her father, John Johansson, who went to the US to work but later came home to western Sweden and married, is seated sixth from the left in the famous image “Lunch atop a Skyscraper”, which has been turned into posters and post cards, adorning knickknacks across the world.

“I really wish I’d tried to find it,” said his retired librarian daughter.

DOCUMENTARY FILM MAKER SAYS SWEDISH CLAIM IS PLAUSIBLE

'They're the unknowns': skyscraper pic expert

Her father smoked, as does the man about to open his lunch box in the image. A slideshow of pictures from Johansson's life does reveal his resemblance to the man in the picture.

SEE A CLIP FROM THE DOCUMENTARY "MEN AT LUNCH"

When the family discussed the image at a recent family gathering, another relative said he was convinced that the man next to Johansson was another local resident, Albin Svensson.

Hallands-Posten notes that Svensson was slightly cross-eyed, but it is hard to tell if the man seated fifth from the left in the image suffers from the same condition as he is glancing down at his neighbour.

The image was taken by the Rockefeller Centre in midtown Manhattan. Behind the men, the rooftops of New York stretch towards Central Park. The Hudson River is visible in the far distance.

Corbis, which now owns the rights to the picture, still credits the photograph to ‘Anonymous’, although it is widely believed that Charles C. Ebbets took the picture.

There have been many attempts to identify the men, and many more claims to positive identifications than there are workers in the pictures.

Irish filmmaker Seán Ó Cualáin has tried to find out who the men are and chronicled his work in the documentary film "Men at lunch".

"We have no idea who the two men you identified are," he told Hallands-Posten in an email.

"Steel workers were often Irish, Native Americans, Scandinavians and Newfoundlanders, so a Swedish claim is credible".

When contacted by The Local, Johansson Duwfa said the family was no longer granting interviews about the photograph.

TT/The Local/at

Follow The Local on Twitter

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

12:10 January 7, 2013 by jamesobrien
When I saw this I was reminded of the other Swedish involvement in a world famous building - the magnificent tiles of the Sydney Opera House http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com/about/house_history/1959_1965.aspx
13:29 January 7, 2013 by Flutterbye
Just looking at the men in that picture makes my stomach churn.
14:23 January 7, 2013 by Rishonim
That picture of one of my favorite and it is probably one of the most recognized all over the world along with Robert Doisneau famous pict with the couple kissing.
18:17 January 7, 2013 by wxman
Reminds me of my grandfather who emmigrated to the US in 1919 at the age of 18 years. He immediately got on a train in New York headed for the Swedish community on Chicago's Northside known as Andersonville. He became a construction laborer and eventually a forman on construction of such skyscrapers all over the country, but primarily in Chicago. These were tough guys.
18:17 January 11, 2013 by PNAPortugal
I believe that you may find out a little more about this. The picture was featured in a Vanity Fair article in the late 90's.

Also, American Bridge Company, who keeps records from their works since it was founded in 1900, and has built most of NY skyscrapers has a museum at their HQ in Coraopolis, with all the records of their jobs. I truly cannot remember if this was one of their construction jobs or not, (although we used to keep it at one of our construction sites at the HSE Department at ABC Portugal) but they could provide that information, and, if it was an ABC job, it is very well possible that you can find out quite a lot about the job itself and the employees. Their records are impecable!

Here is the link to their Wikipedia page, where all contacts can be found: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:American_bridge_logo.png
01:32 January 12, 2013 by FatherJon
However there is another story. Recently I read that those New York skyscraper pics were all posed in the first type of superimposition of images for effect. Workers were paid to sit on the steel beams in a studio with the pic later being transposed onto a photo of the skyline.
Today's headlines
Beggar hit in exhaust fume 'attack'
Exhaust fumes. Photo:Shutterstock.

Beggar hit in exhaust fume 'attack'

A beggar in southern Sweden was forced to flee in terror after she was enveloped with thick black smoke, part of an apparent attack that was captured on video and spread via social media. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden opens the gates for election voting
Don't forget to vote. Photo:Shutterstock.

Sweden opens the gates for election voting

If you're busy on September the 14th, or simply can't wait to have your voice heard, Wednesday morning marked the opening of the polling booths for early-bird voters. READ  

Whooping cough alert after two infants die

Whooping cough alert after two infants die

The Swedish Public Health Agency has urged parents to be aware of the dangers of the infectious whooping cough disease after two babies have recently died from the illness. READ  

Chuck Berry wins 2014 Polar music prize
Chuck Berry performing in Oslo in 2007. Hakon Mosvold Larsen /Scanpix Norway

Chuck Berry wins 2014 Polar music prize

The Polar music prizes were handed out in Stockholm on Tuesday night, with Chuck Berry and theatre director Peter Sellars sharing one million kronor ($153,000) in prizes. READ  

Swedish store scraps high heels for toddlers
The shoes pictured are indeed the shoes in question. Photo: Joakim Loamotte/TT

Swedish store scraps high heels for toddlers

UPDATED: A social media storm has seen a supermarket chain recalling its heeled children's shoes. The man behind the storm says other countries could learn from how seriously Sweden takes equality. READ  

My Swedish Career
'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'
Scarlet Vikarby and her husband Jimmy. Photo: Private

'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'

American Scarlet Vikarby owns a home theatre installation business. She talks to The Local about owning a company, how being a woman can be a game changer, and how to overcome reserved Swedes. READ  

Elections 2014
Why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty
The Alliance leaders. Photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty

Sweden's prime minister got his claws out on Tuesday, accusing the opposition of "promising everything to everyone". With the elections just weeks away, an expert tells us why the campaigning is heating up. READ  

Elderly Swede unhurt after train runs over her
A freight train in Sweden. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/TT

Elderly Swede unhurt after train runs over her

An elderly woman decided to take a stroll on the Swedish railway tracks on Tuesday afternoon, for no apparent reason. After being run over by a freight train the woman emerged completely unharmed. READ  

Elections 2014
Åkesson promises cuts to Sweden's immigration
Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Åkesson promises cuts to Sweden's immigration

The Sweden Democrat party presented its 105 election proposals on Tuesday, with an estimated cost of 63 billion kronor in 2015. The manifesto focused on increasing Swedish welfare and limiting immigration. READ  

Reinfeldt 'would support' anti-terror laws
Fredrik Reinfeldt. Photo: Bertil Ericsson/TT

Reinfeldt 'would support' anti-terror laws

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said on Tuesday that the government would support new laws punishing those who travel abroad to engage in terrorist activities - or even those with plans to do so. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Princess Estelle through the years
Business & Money
Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Business & Money
Five golden rules for the Swedish job hunt
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Gallery
People-watching August 22-24
Blog updates

25 August

Hit och dit, här och där (The Swedish Teacher) »

" Hej igen! A common challenge for Swedish language students are the location adverbs hit/här, dit/där, hem/hemma etc. Some of the location adverbs come in two versions. We should use one type of location adverb when we use a verb describes where we are, and we should use the other type of location adverb when we the verb..." READ »

 

25 August

The Dollar Store (Blogweiser) »

"A dollar store in Sweden. Blog post: http://t.co/tNuuvcP1q0 #USD #greenbacks #sweden #sverige pic.twitter.com/RHFAYf7U1k — Joel Sherwood (@joeldsherwood) August 23, 2014 There’s a chain here in Sweden called The DollarStore. This name always stood out to me in a country where they don’t use dollars. I went there for the first time this weekend. They actually accepted greenbacks..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Armed royal guards caught (very) drunk on the job
National
Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
Gallery
Violent anti-Nazi demonstrations in Malmö
Society
A closer look at Sweden's five official minority languages
Gallery
See the destruction from the southern Sweden floods
Politics
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching August 20th
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

723
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se