miércoles, 19 de mayo de 2010

CAPA AND THE REFUGEES OF CERRO MURIANO: LOCATION OF THE 9 PICTURES MADE ON SEPTEMBER 5,1936.

SPANISH
Text and Indicated Photos: José Manuel Serrano Esparza. LHSA

elrectanguloenlamano.blogspot.com has been able to locate the exact place where Robert Capa made on September 5, 1936 in the area of Cerro Muriano an already known picture and three more ones unknown hitherto, which add to the discovery of the locations of the photographs of refugees made by Capa in this village of Córdoba province that we made in March 2008 and were published in Chapter 2 of our research on Robert Capa in Cerro Muriano, which makes up a total of nine pictures that we´ve been able to locate and that we explain in depth in the epigraph Definitive Location – included in the middle area of this article -, of which two (one in which can be seen two little children with handkerchiefs on their heads fleeing the Finca of Villa Alicia because the Francoist troops are already attacking the north side of Torreárboles hill and another one in which appears a woman mounting a donkey at approximately 700 meters from the north exit of Cerro Muriano village, taking her baby in arms and protecting it with an umbrella from sun beams, while she goes away from the village because of the increase of the Francoist aerial bombing of the village from around 15:00 h in the afternoon) didn´t have either  authorship or location known, since in the book The Spanish People´s Fight for Freedom written by Antonio Ramos Oliveira there isn´t any credit under them and any indication of the place where they were made, and after a strenuous effort of some years we have managed to discover both things. 


The key element for this finding has been a horizontal photograph which was included in the worldwide photographic exhibition This is War! Robert Capa at Work which was firstly held at ICP New York between September 26, 2007 and January 6, 2008 and subsequently in other venues of different countries, in which appears a father, his wife and their sons and daughters of different ages by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, in Torrearboles area, and fleeing from the attack of the Francoist troops already taking place at that moment against the Republican forces defending the south area of this hill located approximately two kilometers in the southwest of Cerro Muriano.

It all has brought about in our viewpoint a significant advance as to the knowledge existing so far on the pictures made by Robert Capa on September 5, 1936, because some sources have been wrongly stating that there were four images of refugees made by them, when really, the photographs of refugees made by Capa in Cerro Muriano and known before these last findings made by elrectanguloenlamano were six.

But now, since April 9, 2010, we know that Robert Capa made a total figure of nine genuinely photojournalistic pictures, since they provide very abundant information, along with compromise in the photographers who captured them) which were taken between approximately 12:30 h at midday and 17:00 h in the afternoon, between the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, Cerro Muriano village, Obejo Train Station and El Vacar, on September 5, 1936, and whose exact spotting has been the fruit of many years of research by elrectanguloenlamano on one hand and Patricio Hidalgo Luque on the other, because during all of this time the working conditions have been very hard, with a scorching heat steadfastly present and the need of walking a lot of tens of kilometers until being able to find the exact locations in which Capa made each picture of refugees in Cerro Muriano area on September 5, 1936.


During the two first weeks of March of 2008, elrectanguloenlamano was in Cerro Muriano and could identify the exact location on which Robert Capa made four of his black and white pictures of refugees fleeing from this village on September 5th 1936 (one made in Cerro Muriano village, depicting a mother on a donkey and holding a little child wrapped in a white blanket while a little girl is on foot eating something which seems to be an apple, another picture of a woman walking between Cerro Muriano village and Obejo Train Station (with the village approximately 2 km behind her) on the way by the railway Cordoba-Almorchón with her right hand touching the right area of her chin, and holding a big improvised plaided baggage with her belongings and a telegraph post and some trees in the background, and one more depicting an old woman fleeing from Cerro Muriano village (approximately 2.5 km behind her) and walking towards Obejo Train Station, taking a baby in her arms (one of whose arms is visible hanging on the left side of the old woman´s waist, while on the left of the image we can see half of the body of a walking man wearing dark clothes, and another walking man on the right of the image, who is holding a big baggage on his head).

On the other hand, elrectanguloenlamano realized that another picture, the first one of the series of refugees on September 5th 1936, which was taken by Capa at midday (approximately at 12:30 h) had been made in the south of Cerro Muriano, because the skyline of the mountains visible in this vertical picture corresponds to Torrearboles (the highest hill of the north Sierra of Cordoba), a hypothesis also established by Patricio Hidalgo Luque, but this is a very big area, and it was not possible to find the exact location where Capa took this picture in which we can see a complete family fleeing from the combats that are already in march at that hour between attacking Francoist troops and Republican forces on the other side of Torrearboles hill. In this photograph, we can see a mature woman wearing dark clothes on the left (holding a baby in her arms), a little boy being approximately 7-9 years old, a mature man wearing black trousers, clear jacket and a hat and holding a little child between his arms (half of the face of the little child is in shadow and his right arm is supported on the right shoulder of the mature man) and in the background we can see a donkey on which there is a very little child.

elrectanguloenlamano.blogspot.com made comparison then and now colour pictures of all the aforementioned locations where Capa made the refugees pictures on September 5th 1936, in both Cerro Muriano area and in some stretches of the old railway line Cordoba-Almorchon between Cerro Muriano Village-Estacion de Obejo-El Vacar.

And I inscribed all of those colour pictures made by me and my research made during the two first weeks of March of 2008 in the Territorial Registry of the Intellectual Property of Madrid on March 17, 2008.

Two years later, on April 9th 2010, elrectanguloenlamano has been able to find, thanks to a lot of toil, sweat and above all luck, the exact locations where Robert Capa made three more unknown till now b & w photographs in Cerro Muriano area that must be added to the four already known, and besides, we could spot the exact location of the last picture of refugees made by Capa on a stretch of Cordoba crossing by the landscape known as Campo Alto, near El Vacar, what verified Patricio Hidalgo Luque´s - his is the main merit of the discovery of the location of this picture- hypothesis, though it was necessary to verify the spot with comparison then and now pictures to pass from hypothesis to reality.

THREE NEW PICTURES OF REFUGEES MADE BY CAPA AND UNKNOWN TILL NOW
Until now, we knew six pictures (not four as stated by some people) made by Capa to the refugees fleeing from Cerro Muriano area to save their lives on September 5th 1936: four of them appearing on page 1107 of the Vu magazine number 445 of September 23, 1936, and two further more (an horizontal one taken in a Cerro Muriano narrow street depicting a mother on a donkey with his child wrapped in a white blanket and a little girl standing by the animal and seemingly eating something, and a vertical one showing an old woman taking a baby in her arms - probably her grandson, whose right arm hangs under the old woman left arm- and hastily walking towards Obejo Train Station fleeing from Cerro Muriano, and with one man wearing dark garments on her left and another one wearing clearer attire on the right corner of the frame and taking a big baggage with his belongings on his head) of which there were some copies on b & w photographic paper that were preserved through decades by Cornell Capa, Edith Schwartz and Richard Whelan.

The new three pictures of refugees made by Capa on September 5th 1936 and unknown till now are the following ones:

Photo: Robert Capa. © ICP New York.

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

a) Photograph taken by Capa by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, on the public way that passes next to it known as Public Way of Villa Alicia or Public Way of the Written Stone, with Torrearboles skyline visible in the background.

This is a horizontal picture, made at midday, and just after the first vertical picture (probably taken by Gerda Taro with her medium format 6 x 6 cm Rolleiflex as we´ll see later) of refugees fleeing from the Cortijo because they are already hearing the exchanges of fire between the trrops pf the left Francoist troops under the command of major Sagrado, who are attacking the south slope of Torreárboles and the Republican forces located on the crest of this hill.

We can see a tall man walking in the middle of two black donkeys. He wears dark trousers and jacket, white shirt and a hat. He seems to be the father of the children who appear behind him (a teenage girl just on his right, mounted on a donkey -wearing a black shirt, whose left sleeve is turned up-, a little child whose head protrudes from the left arm of the quoted young girl, a man in the far right background (hardly visible, mounted on a white donkey and wearing a cap with shade on his head), a little girl being approximately between 6-8 years old that is mounted on the black horse which is in the image just on the right of the tall man (she is wearing a clear jacket and dark shirt, while her hair is very tousled, her chin being partially hidden by the right tip of the black horse), and behind her, on the extreme left area of the photograph we can see a woman dressed with a dark garment, mounted on a white donkey and taking with her an absolutely lovely very little baby who has been captured by Robert Capa with all of his charm.

This photograph was unknown so far and was made by Robert Capa. There isn´t any doubt in this regard. The framing and composition are very typical in him, second nature and highly instinctive, adjusting the low area of the frame as much as possible to the nearest character to his camera, something which he would do once and again through his profesional career.

Seventy four years after Capa and Gerda Taro were in Cerro Muriano, the aforementioned second picture taken by Capa at midday in the south of Cerro Muriano with Torrearboles in the background (the horizontal one), an image unknown till the exhibition This is War! Robert Capa at Work held in New York, London, Milan, Barcelona and Rotterdam, has enabled elrectanguloenlamano to discover the exact location where these two pictures (the first vertical and the next one horizontal) were made: by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, in the south area of Cerro Muriano, and approximately at a distance of 1,100 meters from the rotonda which links the CP-45 and the old N-432 Granada-Badajoz highway.

I do believe that all the men, women and children appearing in these two pictures taken by Robert Capa by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia with Torrearboles hill in the background, are members of the Zamora Lozano family.

Josefa Lozano and Rafael Lozano bought Villa Alicia in 1921, and it was subsequently improved by Miguel Zamora and Rafaela Lozano (who celebrated their Golden Anniversary in the Cortijo of Villa Alicia on January 6th 1986).

I´m convinced that all the people appearing in these two pictures made by Capa by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia are the members of the Zamora Lozano family on September 5, 1936, both grown up adults and little boys, girls and and babies.

Though 74 years have elapsed since Capa made these two pictures, I do believe that some of the persons photographed by Capa that midday of September 5th 1936 by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia could be still alive, being currently approximately between 74 and 90 years old.


b) At the same time, elrectanguloenlamano has found that this third picture which is on one of the pages of the illustrated book La Lucha del Pueblo Español por su Libertad, compiled by A. Ramos Oliveira and published in 1937 by the Press Department of the Spanish Embassy in London, was taken by Robert Capa also by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, just beyond it, on the right, approximately at midday 12:30 h of September, 5, 1936.

In this black and white horizontal photograph, we can see two little children mounted on a donkey with the very clear profile of Torrearboles hill visible on the left of them in the background.

The elder brother child is holding the youngest one - sat on a pillow and with his naked right leg visible-. Both of the children are wearing pieces of white clothes probably knotted and put on their heads by the mother.

We can also glimpse the black beret and face in shadow of a man (he could be the father of both children) protruding over the pillow. Also discernible are a plaided blanket on the saddle on the left of the image and the right eye of the donkey on the right lower area of the photograph. I do believe that this was probably the first picture taken by Capa of refugees by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, because the slope of Torrearboles with some trees visible in the left background is nearer than in the other two pictures.


c) At the same time, elrectanguloenlamano has also able to discover that this third picture also appearing in one of the pages of the aformentioned illustrated book La Lucha del Pueblo Español por su Libertad, was made by Robert Capa in Cerro Muriano area on September 5, 1936 and we have found the exact location where he took it.

In this photograph we can see a young woman mounted on a mule and taking her baby between her arms, while she is grabbing a big umbrella to protect herself and specially the baby from the sun beams. On the lower area of the image we can also see a dog. Bearing in mind the shadows, this picture was made by Capa approximately between 15:20h and 15:45 h in the afternoon of September 5th 1936, around six hundred meters from the north outskirsts of Cerro Muriano village. This woman is advancing northwards towards Obejo Train Station.

DEFINITIVE LOCATION OF THE NINE PICTURES OF REFUGEES MADE BY CAPA IN CERRO MURIANO AREA AND EL VACAR ON SEPTEMBER 5TH 1936

Therefore, elrectanguloenlamano has been able to spot the exact location of the nine pictures that Robert Capa took of refugees in Cerro Muriano area on September 5th 1936:

Photo: Robert Capa. © Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos


Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza



1) Vertical photography, made by Robert Capa on September 5th 1936 at midday, by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, just beside it, on the small adjacent esplanade.-

Discovery of the location of this picture: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

It was taken before the next horizontal picture of the series, made by Capa on a point of the Camino de Villa Alicia located at very few meters from the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, in which we can see a tall man wearing a hat walking between two donkeys, and behind him his wife, and some of his sons and daughters - some of them babies- are also marching on donkeys, they all fleeing from Torreárboles area and going following northeast direction towards Cerro Muriano, Obejo Train Station, etc.

In this vertical photograph we can see an old woman on the left holding a little child between her arms and a man on the right clad with the typical Andalusian hat and taking a little boy between his arms. You can also see a boy being approximately eight years old in short trousers and a donkey in the background with a very little child hardly glimpsed mounted on it.

This is the second photograph of refugees taken by Capa and is made around high noon by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, in the southwest of Cerro Muriano village, approximately at one kilometer and two hundred meters from the rotonda which links the CP-45 way and the old N-432 Granada-Badajoz highway.

I do believe that all the persons appearing in these two pictures taken by Robert Capa by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia with Torrearboles hill in the background, are the members of the Zamora Lozano family, both grown up adults and little children and babies.

Josefa Lozano and Rafael Lozano bought Villa Alicia in 1921, and it was subsequently improved by Miguel Zamora and Rafaela Lozano, who celebrated their Golden Anniversary in the Cortijo of Villa Alicia on January 6th 1986.

Though 74 years have elapsed since Capa made these two pictures, I do believe that some of the persons photographed by Capa that midday of September 5th 1936 by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia could be still alive, being currently approximately between 74 and 90 years old.

The hill that can be seen in the background is Torrearboles, and fierce fighting is taking place on the other side of it (the one facing the city of Córdoba) between Republican forces defending Torrearboles and major Sagrado´s left wing of Francoist troops, which proves without any doubt that Capa and Gerda Taro risked their lives going to the Cortijo of Villa Alicia area to make pictures, because at that moment the Republican troops defending the north side of Torreárboles (combats were already taking place in the south side of this hill) feared above all the possibility of encircling manoeuver of major Baturone´s legionnaries through Villa Alcia estate for the definitive capture of Torreárboles (something that would happen during the evening/night of September 5, 1936) complementing the attack of the left Francoist column of major Sagrado, while the Tabor of Regulares of Melilla under the command of coronel Sáenz of Buruaga - which made up the core of the right wing of the Francoist attack on Cerro Muriano area - had the mission of encircling Las Malagueñas hill on its north side and assault the Casa de Las Malagueñas, a big country house located on top of this knoll, and where was the Republican headquarters in the area, under the command of major Juan Bernal, something that above all because of the very hard opposition made by the anarchist militiamen from Alcoy, couldn´t fulfill until the first hours of the night, when Clemente Cimorra, Capa, Gerda Taro and the high Republican officers had to escape towards Cerro Muriano village, for it was already impossible to resist more the attack of the Moroccan Tabor of Regulares infantry.

The people photographed by Capa know it and are gathering beginning to go up towards Cerro Muriano village following north direction to subsequently abandon the village walking by the railway until reaching the Obejo Train Station and El Vacar.

This photograph appeared on three different media:

- Vu magazine nº445 page 1107 of September 23, 1936.

- Page 64 of Photo-History II 1937 edited by Richard Storrs Childs, Ernest Galarza and Sidney Pollatsek at Concord, N.H Editorial and General Offices, 155 East 44th Street New York City, Modern Age Books, Inc, in the United States.

- Page 82 of the book Robert Capa Photographic Work edited by Phaidon Press.
In the picture of Vu magazine, the image is in four thirds proportion and around one third of the right top half of the image is cut by the lower left area of a square format picture made by Georg Reisner in Cerro Muriano also on September 5, 1936.

Anyhow, the background of Torrearboles hill is perfectly identifiable in the background, the woman taking a baby in her arms appears filling the whole left area of the frame, there is a boy in his 7-9 years by her, a man clad in typical Andalusian attire with a hat taking a little girl in her arms, the legs of two donkeys behind them (on one of them located just on the right of the boy in his 7-9 years head we can barely glimpse a baby mounted on it), and filling almost the whole right corner of the frame we can see a striped blanket rendered out of focus by the Leitz Elmar 50 mm f/3.5 of Capa´s Leica II (Model D), while a high percentage of the low part of the picture (with the exception of the lower right area of the photograph) is cut by the top sky area of a picture made by Capa of other refugees fleeing from Cerro Muriano (a mother with a baby between her arms, her elder girl behind and her husband with a blanket) in Campo Alto area near El Vacar), so the old woman´s legs, the boy in his 7-9 years legs and the man clad in typical Andalusian attire with a straw hat´s legs appear cut, and the top limit of the frame is almost touching the old woman´s head).

In the picture of page 64 of Photo-History II 1937, there are four images taken in different areas of Spain during the Civil War, the one made by Capa on September 5, 1936, appearing on the lower left half of the page, this time reproducedin an almost square format, because the editor has cut a big percentage of the right half of the original black and white negative, in such a way that we can´t see the out of focus striped blanket which appears both in the original negative and in the image reproduced in Vu magazine of September 23, 1936, and now, the vertical limit of the right border of the picture falls just on the right of the left elbow of the young girl who is taken in arms by the man clad in typical Andalucian countryside attire with straw hat, while the low area of the edited image enables us to watch the slippers of the quoted man and the legs and slippers of the boy in his 7-9 years, which could not be seen in the Vu picture.

It is also very interesting to observe that between the hair of the old woman taking a baby in her arms (appearing filling the left half of the image) and the top limit of the negative there´s approximately a 5% more of space that in the picture of Vu, and what seems to be a telegraph post superior area is much more discernible, and on the top right area of the frame we can see the branches of a tree.

In the picture of page 82 of the book Robert Capa Photographic Work edited by Phaidon Press (almost identical to the one appearing on page 64 of Photo-History II 1937, the first remarkable thing is the very high detail rendered on the garments of the people appearing (specially on the boy in his 7-9 years clear jacket and the already quoted man clad in typical Andalusian countryside attire, including the plaits on their trousers).

This image of page 82 of the aforementioned great book, has got a bit of less space on the right border of the picture than the image of Photo-History II 1937 magazine, so the vertical limit of the right area of the negative falls on the left ear of the little girl who is being taken in arms by the man clad with typical Andalusian garments, clear jacket, black trousers and straw hat.

It seems apparent that in vast majority of publications where this picture was published (with the exception of Vu), this photograph was cropped on the right of the frame to eliminate the out of focus striped blanket which appears in the original 24 x 36 mm negative exposed by Capa with his Leica II (Model D).

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: Robert Capa. © ICP New York

2) Horizontal photograph taken by Capa at midday by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, with Torrearboles hill skyline visible in the background.-

Discovery of the location of this picture: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

This image was made just after the first vertical picture of refugees, aforementioned and also made by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia.

We can see a tall man walking in the middle of two black donkeys. He is wearing dark trousers and jacket, white shirt and a hat. He seems to be the father of the children who appear behind him (a teenage girl just on his right, mounted on a donkeywearing a black shirt, whose left sleeve is turned up-, a little child whose head protrudes from the left arm of the quoted young girl, a man in the far right background (hardly visible, mounted on a white donkey and wearing a cap with shade on his head), a little girl being approximately between 6-8 years old that is mounted on the black horse which is in the image just on the right of the tall man (she is wearing a clear jacket and dark shirt, while her hair is very tousled, her chin being partially hidden by the right tip of the black horse), and behind her, on the extreme left area of the photograph we can see a woman dressed with a dark garment, mounted on a white donkey and taking with her an absolutely lovely very little baby who has been captured by Robert Capa with all of his charm.

This photograph was unknown till now and was made by Robert Capa. There isn´t any doubt in this regard. The framing and composition are very typical in him, second nature and highly instinctive, adjusting the low area of the frame as much as possible to the nearest character to his camera, something which he would do once and again through his profesional career.



3) Picture taken by Capa by the Cortijo of Villa Alicia, which is on one of the pages of the illustrated book La Lucha del Pueblo Español por su Libertad, compiled by A. Ramos Oliveira and published in 1937 by the Press Department of the Spanish Embassy in London.

In this black and white horizontal photograph, we can see two little children mounted on a donkey with the very clear profile of Torrearboles hill visible in on the left of them in the background.-

Discovery of the location of this picture and that Capa was his author: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

The elder brother child is holding the youngest one - sat on a pillow and with his naked right leg visible-. Both of the children are wearing pieces of white clothes probably knotted and put on their heads by the mother. We can also glimpse the black beret and face in shadow of a man (he could be the father of both children) protruding over the pillow. Also discernible are a plaided blanket on the saddle on the left of the image and the right eye of the donkey on the right lower area of the photograph.

Photo: Robert Capa. © Magnum Photos. 

4) Horizontal photograph, taken by Capa on September 5th 1936 at around 15:00 h in the afternoon in a narrow street of Cerro Muriano, depicting a mother mounted on a donkey with a little boy wrapped in a white blanket between her arms and a felt hat immediately on the right, along with a second smaller son part of whose head can be glimpsed by the hat. You can see two windows in the background under a scorching sun rendering a very high key area. Immediately on the right of the donkey´s head, you can watch a little girl (her daughter) eating what seems to be an apple.

Picture located by Juan Romero Ruiz, son of Josefa Ruiz, who is the woman appearing on the donkey.Juan Romero Ruiz (who is the child depicted wrapped in a white blanket) was also the person who firstly discovered that the woman is Josefa Ruiz, his mother, when Adela Romero Blanque (Josefa Ruiz´s greatgranddaughter), showed him 69 years later, in 2005, a book in one of whose pages appeared this photograph, what was explained in an article made by Patricia Fonseca and Bruno Rascao in August 2006 and published in the Portuguese magazine Visâo of September 2006.

They are advancing from left to right, fleeing in north direction to reach the railway towards the Obejo Train Station and El Vacar.

Because of the narrowness of this street and the fact that he was using a Leitz Summar 50 mm f/2 lens, Capa was possibly forced to lean his back on the other wall of the street behind him in order to have an appropriate shooting distance, doing his best trying to include them all inside the image. That´s why the frame is so tight, cutting some of the woman´s head on top and the donkey´s body halfway below.

From this picture on, the refugees photographed by Capa are people compelled to abandon Cerro Muriano after some air attacks of fascist aircraft on the village.

I made a picture of the narrow street of Cerro Muriano in which I think that Capa made this second photograph of refugees fleeing from the village. The people seen in the picture together with the donkey were advancing from the bottom of the street to the camera following north direction to cross the village upwards and trying to reach the railway for Obejo Train Station.

5) Picture made by Capa in Cerro Muriano area on September 5th 1936 and unknown till now. It appears in one of the pages of the aforementioned illustrated book La Lucha del Pueblo Español por su Libertad, published in 1937.

In this photograph we can see a young woman mounted on a mule and taking her baby between her arms, while she is grabbing a big umbrella to protect herself and specially the baby from the sun beams.-

Discovery of the location of this picture and that it was made by Capa: José Manuel Serrano Esparza.

On the lower area of the image we can also see a dog. Bearing in mind the shadows, this picture was made by Capa approximately between 15:20 and 15:45 h in the afternoon of September 5th 1936 around 600 hundred meters from the north entrance to Cerro Muriano village. This woman is advancing northwards towards Obejo Train Station.

Photo: Robert Capa. © Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

6) Picture made by Robert Capa of refugees fleeing from Cerro Muriano to save their lives, following north direction towards Obejo Train Station.- 

Virtually impossible to spot the exact location of this image, because of its very blurred background.

There are three women wearing black dresses and walking under a scorching sun: two young mothers (on the center and left, the one on the left is taking a very little baby in her arms and the one in the center is taking a blond more grown up child with his right arm while takes the arm of an old woman on the right of the frame helping her to walk) and an old woman on the right.

Photo: Robert Capa. © Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

7) Vertical photography taken by Capa on September 5th 1936 at around 15:35 h in the afternoon of a woman taking in her left arm a very big checkered baggage with her belongings. She has got the back of her right hand almost touching her chin.-

Discovery of the location of this picture: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

A lot of fear is reflected on her face and she´s looking at Capa rather puzzled. Behind her you can see a telegraph post which is nowadays exactly as it was 71 years ago. This woman is walking hastily towards Obejo Train Station.

Photo: Robert Capa. © Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

8) Vertical photograph taken by Capa on September 5th 1936 at around 15:45 h in the afternoon of an old woman taking a very little baby wrapped in a blanket in her arms. She shows a great deal of angst and fear and is walking very fast. One of the arms of the baby is hanging from the waist of the woman.-

Discovery of the location of this picture: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

This is another very dramatic image of people escaping from death. The telegraph post located on the right of the woman as we watch the picture, was broken after the Spanish Civil War, but the rest of this spot currently remains exactly the same. The body of the woman is hiding some big trees similar to the one appearing on the right of the frame.

This picture was taken by Capa on the spot shown in the colour picture, located by the Cordoba-Almorchon railway, on a spot between Cerro Muriano and Obejo Train Station.

Photo: Robert Capa. © Cornell Capa / Magnum Photos

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

9) Horizontal photograph taken by Capa on September 5th 1936 at around 17:30 h in the afternoon in a stretch of the Córdoba-Almorchón railways located at in Campo Alto estate at around 8 km from Cerro Muriano and 3 km from El Vacar, with a woman on the right taking a very little child in her arms. She appears wearing a kitchen apron on her dress.-

Behind her (on the left of the frame) we can see a very young girl walking barefoot who is looking at Capa, and after her we see very probably the husband of the woman and father of both girls, clad in a black attire, cap and bearing a blanket. He´s also looking at Capa.

It is a very dramatic image. The woman isn´t looking at Robert Capa. Her sight is stray, because of the great fear and she is very anxious and worried about the security of her two daughters. It´s evident that they all have fled Cerro Muriano village full-blast to save their lives, leaving all their belongings behind.

elrectanguloenlamano.blogspot.com  was able to find, through huge sweat and above all with big luck, the exact spot of the Cordoba-Almorchon railway on which Capa made this picture: it was on a spot of the track between the stretch of Cordoba-Almorchón crossing by the landscape known as Campo Alto, near El Vacar.

Discovery of the wide area between Obejo Train Station and El Vacar called Campo Alto in which this picture was made: Patricio Hidalgo Luque. His is the main merit of this finding.

Discovery of the exact location where the picture was taken, with photographic evidence: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

THE HANS NAMUTH/GEORG REISNER PICTURES OF THE REFUGEES OF CERRO MURIANO
There are also two important pictures made in the afternoon of September 5th 1936, that though not taken by Robert Capa, but by Georg Reisner, are important because they also show the fear and suffering of the civil population who had to flee from Cerro Muriano when the Francoist planes began to bombard the village:

Photo: Georg Reisner


Photo: Georg Reisner

a) Photograph made by George Reisner and taken between Cerro Muriano village and Obejo Train Station.

Discovery of the location of this picture: Patricio Hidalgo Luque

It depicts a woman who is walking with her three children towards Obejo Train Station following the Cordoba-Almorchon railway. The stress and fear to be captured is so high that the woman turns her head backwards to verify security, while she holds his youngest child between her arms. This is a picture mostly reproduced in square format, including Vu magazine of September 23, 1936, but the original negative is rectangular, because it was shot with a 35 mm camera.

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: Hans Namuth / Georg Reisner.

b) Photograph credited for Hans Namuth/Georg Reisner (so it isn´t easy to know who of the two was the author) and made approximately at 15:30 h near the north outskirts of Cerro Muriano village.

Elrectanguloenlamano could identify the spot on which the picture was made (the little knoll on the left of the image exists still currently, while the area on the right has changed very much with the elapse of time and is nowadays full of houses which were built after the Spanish Civil War) very near the north entrance to Cerro Muriano village, and we made pictures of the place from different points as an evidence.

All the people appearing in this horizontal image (seven women - the two most on the left are taking heavy baggages, other two are crying, one more is taking a baby between her arms, and two of them are partially seen on far right of the frame and their face is not discernible-, an old man mounted on a donkey and holding a little girl with his hands, and a young man in the background wearing a black beret and taking a baby between her arms) are hastily fleeing from the Fascist bombing of Cerro Muriano and are walking fast following north direction towards the Obejo Train Station and El Vacar.

The woman most on the left of this photograph, who is grabbing a big plaided baggage with her belongings, is the same one photographed by Robert Capa approximately 1.5 km beyond this spot, in the direction of Obejo Train Station. Id est, when either Hans Namuth or Georg Reisner (who are probably with the Austrian writer Franz Borkenau) make this picture and both German photographers advance towards Cerro Muriano (being in this photograph already very near the north entrance to the village)
, Capa and Gerda Taro have advanced in opposite direction for a lot of minutes, not towards Cerro Muriano as Namuth and Reisner, but towards Obejo Train Station and El Vacar, and are now approximately mid way between Cerro Muriano and Obejo Train Station (the latter located at a distance of 5 km), and Capa will make the picture of the woman with the big plaided baggage a lot of minutes later, more in the north, with this woman walking hastily towards Obejo Train Station and on a spot by the railway Córdoba-Almorchón located around 1, 5 km from the point in which Namuth / Reisner make this picture.

Discovery of the location of this picture: Richard Whelan, in 1982, when he spoke personally with Hans Namuth two years after beginning in 1980 his research to make the biography on Robert Capa. Photographic verification: José Manuel Serrano Esparza

Photo: Hans Namuth.

c) A horizontal photograph in which we can see a lot of refugees fleeing from Cerro Muriano and advancing towards Obejo Train Station and El Vacar, while two Republican militiamen are walking towards Cerro Muriano village.

All these people are on a spot very near the north entrance to Cerro Muriano village, visible in the background, with the still existing little knoll on the left, while the one on the right doesn´t exist any more, since it was progressively occupied by a lot of houses built after the Spanish Civil War, and such area is currently full of all kinds of abodes.


The picture was made from a very short distance, practically at point blank range, and on the left of the image we can see a very frightened and anguished mother, walking quickly and holding her baby in arms, and by her is her elder son, also walking and grabbing his mother´s left arm, the fear being also reflected on the face of this boy, whose chest is cut by the lower border of the image.

Just behind this woman, there´s a man walking and taking a little girl between his arms. Bearing in mind the scarce difference in age among the three children (the eldest one is wearing dark clothes and his head, neck and upper area of his chest are on the lower area of the image, the intermediate one in age is the little girl held by the young man wearing dark trousers and short sleeved clear shirt, and the youngest one is the baby taken in arms by her mother), this man is almost with utter certainty the woman´s husband, is in his thirties and clearly shows fear and stress on his face, so perhaps some of the bombs have fallen near his house. Even, his daughter who he´s taking between his arms, is looking backwards with curiosity, over his father´s right shoulder, to watch what is happening behind them.


Just on the left of the head of the mother who is walking holding her baby between her arms, we can see another woman walking hastily with his right arm stretched and taking on one of her shoulders a big baggage with all of her belongings she has managed to save.

We can also see a mature woman behind the young husband (the one on the right of the young father hasn´t even had time to take out her apron) and a man clad with the typical Andalusian countryside garb walks behind them, followed by approximately twenty more people also escaping from Cerro Muriano at full speed.


Besides, we can glimpse the head and shoulders of a woman (out of focus and whose age is not possible to guess) between the heads of the two Republican militiamen, and finally, on the top right area of the image and likewise out of focus, we can see two men (the nearest to the militiamen is wearing a clear short sleeved shirt and a beret).

In vast majority of the reproductions of this photograph which were through decades, approximately a 50% of the left half of the original 35 mm negative and around a 30% of the sky top area were cut by the editor, creating a new rectangular image very different from the original one, changes being that the whole landscape appearing on the left of the original 24 x 36 mm was cut and also a high percentage of the sky area above the heads of the scared refugees, also cutting the whole left arm and from the lower area of the woman´s youngest son towards below, along with the striped lower area of the blanket with which the mother is wrapping up her baby.


On its turn, Le Matin newspaper of September 22, 1936, reproduced this picture in a 4:3 aspect ratio chosen by the editor, who cropped approximately the 50% of the left half of the original 35 mm negative (id est, cutting a high percentage of the landscape on the left), and around 30% of the sky top area, but preserving the whole low area of the negative, including the lower chest, complete left arm and sctomach area of the woman´s elder son together with the striped lower area of the blanket with which the mother is wrapping his baby.


At the same time, the editor of this image reproduced in Vu on September 22, 1936, has preserved approximately a 5% more of image of the original negative on far right of the frame, so we can see the complete body and legs of the man more on the right of the top area of the negative (who often appears cut on his left shoulder in many of the reproductions of this picture, also being true that in the existing reproductions approaching an aspect ratio between 1.85:1 and 2.39:1, showing a high percentage of the original 35 mm negative, only the man dressed with white shirt and beret can be glimpsed - though his left shoulder has almost been cut by the right vertical limit of the image and the man walking by him on far right of the original negative doesn´t appear on the image, because on making the cut for creating a picture featuring an image with very wide ratio (approaching to the modern anamorphic widescreen cinema showings from 1970 onwards), this man has been left out of the right boundary of the image by the editor.

When Hans Namuth (who goes with the also German photographer Georg Reisner and probably with the Austrian journalist Franz Borkenau) makes this picture on a spot very near the north entrance to Cerro Muriano village, advancing with his two companions following south direction towards that village, Capa and Gerda Taro are a lot of hundreds of meters away, more in the north of the point depicted in this picture by Namuth, after having marched in opposite direction, id est, not towards Cerro Muriano village, but towards Obejo Train Station.

Such as Hans Namuth reported to Richard Whelan in an interview held in 1982, Namuth, Reisner and Borkenau didn´t see Capa and Taro at any moment during September 5, 1936, though some weeks later, when they watched in the number of Vu magazine of September 23, 1936, the pictures of refugees made by Capa in Cerro Muriano area (above all the ones made between Cerro Muriano and Obejo Train Station) they realized that Capa and Taro had already been in the zone on September 5, 1936, because one of the women photographed by Capa (who can be seen on the lower right angle of the page 1107 of the aforementioned number 445 of Vu magazine of September 23, 1936, grabbing a big plaided baggage with her belongings with he left hand, while she is walking fast fleeing from the Francoist bombing of Cerro Muriano), also appears in one of the picture taken by Hans Namuth / Georg Reisner - made within a very short elapse of time between both of them and from almost identical spot of capture with respect to the image appearing edited just on this paragraph (the one made by Namuth on whose left side there´s a mother holding her baby in her arms) and just under it with the complete frame - very near the north entrance of Cerro Muriano village which depicts this same woman accompanied by other five (one of them takes a baby in her arms) along with an old man wearing a clear colour beret who hold a young girl between his arms while he´s mounted on a white donkey, and a further old man wearing a black beret can be glimpsed in the background holding a baby in his arms).


Photo: Hans Namuth.

Photo: José Manuel Serrano Esparza





Text and Colour Photographs inscribed in the Territorial Registry of the Intellectual Property of Madrid.

Copyright Jose Manuel Serrano Esparza. LHSA