Recording June 16th Made History

Pictures Tell the Story

Brave journalists and cameramen risked their lives and liberty to record the events of June 16, 1976, as they unfolded. 

©Eric Miller
A reminder of the Tragedy that occurred in 1976, Hector Petersen Museum, Soweto.

The South African government at this time censored all material and suppressed the press from recording the truth, especially when it pertained to demonstrations actively protesting against the apartheid government.

Camera in Hand

©Eric Miller
Inside the Hector Petersen Museum, Soweto showing images taken on that fateful day on June 16th 1976.

Peter Magubane, a photojournalist, had that very morning emerged from the longest solitary confinement on record in South Africa. And yet, there he was surrounded by students and police, in Soweto, camera in hand.

Peter convinced the students that he should photograph their protest by saying "History without evidence is no history at all".

His evidence remains the fullest testament to what unfolded that incredible day, to how our children forged our adult futures on June 16, 1976, and into the time that followed, as the protests flared and caught on throughout the country. Incredulously, their tragic losses of life and limb were to turn the tide of history forever. South Africa would never be the same again.