Psychic action shot

Weegee (1899-1968), Action shot by Weegee, February 16, 1941 (974.1993)
(Remnants of a “Three Lions, 551 Fifth Avenue” sticker, and a beautiful “This Photo Sold for Use in One Publication Only, Credit Line Must Read, Arthur Fellig Photo, 5 Center Market Place, New York City” stamp, adorn the verso.)

Weegee (1899-1968), Action shot by Weegee, February 16, 1941 (AGFA negative 2198)

Weegee (1899-1968), [Police with man caught in candy store, New York], February 16, 1941 (975.1993)

PM, February 17, 1941, p.14

Police Report: Weegee Covers an Arrest and a Fire

Man Caught in Store: Called early yesterday to investigate a broken candy store front at 459 Broadway, just two blocks from Police Headquarters, detectives – and our police photographer, Weegee – arrived in time to meet this man coming out. Led away to a radio car, which took him to the station house where he was booked on charges of burglary, the man calmly asked his captors for a light.

Fire on Fifth Avenue: Firemen entertained Sunday afternoon strollers by using a wide variety of apparatus to fight this smoky blaze on the second floor of a loft building at Fifth Ave. and 14th St. Weegee borrowed the blonde “spectator” below from Brenner Brothers coat and fur store, 2 W. 14th. “I didn’t think a little air would do her any harm,” he explained.

PM, February 17, 1941, pp.14-15 (page 14: photos by Weegee; page 15: photos by David Eisendrath, Jr.)

Three days and seventy-nine years ago, a fruitful Sunday for the industrious Weegee, our (perhaps psychic) police photographer, photographed an arrest of a burglar and a loft fire. (And a mannequin.)

Fascinatingly, on the facing page, opposite of Weegee’s quartet of (sweet and hot) photos, was a report on a boisterous anti-Fascism rally attended by 1,500 Italian-Americans in the great hall of the Cooper Union. The U.S. entered World War Two a mere two months and ten days before the rally.

Although the photographer may have been psychic (there’s ample evidence to support this proposition) he was aided in getting to this crime scene in-progress by the reality that both Police Headquarters and the Photographer’s Home were two short blocks away.

At least one of these four photos (leading off the “Psychic Photography” chapter) are in Weegee’s tome Naked City, excellently designed and recently reprinted. Available soon in bookstores everywhere.

Weegee (1899-1968), Naked City, 1945, pp.204-205

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