08 March 2016

Fischer Wirephotos I

Or should that be 'Fischer Wire Photos'? Whatever you call them, Wikipedia Wirephoto says,

Wirephoto or telephotography is the sending of pictures by telegraph or telephone. Western Union transmitted its first halftone photograph in 1921. AT&T followed in 1924, and RCA sent a Radiophoto in 1926. The Associated Press began its Wirephoto service in 1935 and held a trademark on the term AP Wirephoto between 1963 and 2004.

A few weeks ago, in The Real Bobby Fischer?, I collected 'close to 100' Fischer photos, most of them wirephotos. After posting, I changed the file name of each photo to the date on the caption attached to the photo, sorted them chronologically, and eliminated the duplicates. The first 30 are shown below, although the dates of the wirephotos don't always match the dates on which they were originally taken.

The photos start with Fischer's pre-match training sessions, including a tennis tournament he played in early June 1972. The sequences showing Spassky without Fischer are from the period where the world was waiting to see if Fischer would actually show up in Iceland. My composite image ends with a photo of Spassky taken at the time of the 12th game, which would have been mid-match had the event run to its full 24 games. Some famous photos are missing, e.g. the photo of Fischer exiting the aircraft at Reykjavik airport, which gives me hints for future directions.

My favorite photos are the third through fifth in the second row. They were taken on the night of 29th June, a period covered in Darrach's second chapter ('A Night at the Airport', see 'Real Bobby Fischer' for background). Frank Brady's 'Profile of a Prodigy' (Dover 1973) covered the same hours in a single, long paragraph (p.225).

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