There is a story to it. It might have been in the late fifties or early sixtes. The crushed revolution of Hungary was memory, but not yet history.
By clicking on the image you can download a large scale
(530 by 800 pixel) version of the title page.
Quite a number of people responded to the request at bottom left, and sent me numerous pictures of the Marina City Towers, yet no one sent me that particular title page. I appreciated their efforts, but I was not satisfied.
Years after I wrote and uploaded this short confession regarding my feelings about those twin towers in Chicago, I bought the complete CD edition of National Geographic Magazine. It is a collection of some 30 CD disks, with ALL the pages ever published in that magnificent periodical up to 1998. It cost me almost twice as much as my first car (really, no exaggeration in that), but I was determined to show you that photograph somehow.
Working myself through the strain of the registration procedures (as many registrations as there are decades in the history of the magazine) I finally reached the search function, because there is one. And lo, there it was, that famous front cover, with Marina City Towers against the night sky.
And it was the June 1967 issue. My memory had betrayed me, it was off by almost a decade.
However, I decided to leave the text as it is. I want to keep the opportunity for myself to investigate why and how I projected that amazement that I felt back into te past. From my youth back to my childhood.
I want to analyze the workings of my memory, so if you read that line at left, please consider that I was wrong with the timing of the story's beginning, and the request at the end of the article is out of date.
As a kid, I knew there was such a thing as "the West", but all through my childhood I was taught that Western culture was far inferior to our Socialism. American culture was Coca Cola (mistakenly identified with cocaine), it was Walt Disney (labeled as kitsch), America was all gunsmoke and street violence, and those who weren't shot in the streets in broad daylight were lynched by the Ku Klux Klan at night.
It was in this atmosphere of the Cold War at its peak, that a copy of National Geographic Magazine somehow got into my hands. On the front cover, there was a photograph of Marina City Towers in Chicago, illuminated in the night. I was flabbergasted. The sheer beauty of the buildings and the photograph (and the magazine itself, for that matter) was something I was not prepared for. Western culture took my by surprise and knocked me flat in a second.
Then in the mid-Eighties I had my first chance to go to America on a business trip, and the first city I visited was Chicago. Disregarding my jet lag and the late night hour, I went on a pilgrimage to Marina City Towers, and just stood in front of the buildings overwhelmed. I touched the wall to make sure it was for real, and then went back to my hotel to rest after the long flight.
For the above reason, Marina City Towers symbolize America for me. I wanted to pay tribute to them on this page, and possibly also through the inclusion of that cover of National Geographic Magazine.
If anyone reading this owns a copy, and is in a position to have it scanned, please do, and send it to my E-mail address below. I will put the photograph up on this page, giving credit to the person who answered this request. (Please disregard this last paragraph. I only left it in for historic accuracy, because I now have that photograph, see above at right.)
My E-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
or on the title graphic
to go back to the photo catalog page