Wednesday, March 27, 2013

San Quentin Vigil?

This pic was sent by a friend of the blog who's dad was a guard at San Quentin for decades. He took this shot while Manson was incarcerated there on death row. It was apparently a group of young people holding a vigil in protest Charles Manson's death sentence after his arrival there.

I personally do not recognize any family members. All of these kids look clean and all of them are wearing shoes, a few of them nice shoes.

Anybody recognize a face or two?





11 comments:

hippichick40 said...

Negative. As you say, they all look far too clean, healthy and well-groomed to be one of Charlie's tribe.

Panamint Patty said...

UC Berkeley is a hop skip and jump from San Quentin. Patty's guess is that we are looking at a bunch o' "golden bears" on a field trip.

Farflung said...

I don’t think that the crowd in the photo is protesting the arrival of Manson since he theoretically only spent a couple days there, and that transfer was a closely held secret. It could happen, but a very narrow window of opportunity.

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=0F1QAAAAIBAJ&sjid=iVcDAAAAIBAJ&pg=2520,6818489&dq=san+quentin+manson&hl=en

He still had the Hinman/Shea trial to go through and some of the imagery in that photo could be anachronistic considering that Manson would not be back till late August or early September 1971. That leaves less than nine months till the death penalty was suspended with only one execution since 1967. The death penalty wasn’t as much a hot potato, as were the actual executions.

Here’s my wild assed guess at the mystery photo.

I too noticed a group of well dressed and groomed, young peoples, sitting on a curb in a non-threatening fashion, in a semi-organized grouping. This does not contain a single Manson earmark, thus I’m forced to look elsewhere.

The location is the US Post Office outside the gate of the prison as you can see by comparing this image:

http://fineartamerica.com/featured/san-quentin-post-office-in-california-7d18549-wingsdomain-art-and-photography.html

See the faux stone embellishment around the door and the postal drop box in the foreground? Of course you do. Could that drop box help narrow the time window?

http://about.usps.com/who-we-are/postal-history/collection-box-colors.pdf

So the new ‘all blue’ drop boxes were introduced in 1971, the same year Manson was delivered to San Quentin. But there aren’t any protest signs, looks of angst or impatience. So what would attract a group of young people to sit on the step of a post office at San Quentin?

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=78tGAAAAIBAJ&sjid=gHsMAAAAIBAJ&pg=5741,1579969&dq=san+quentin+aaron&hl=en

Those people in the photo above the article loosely resemble the group in the mystery shot. Aaron Mitchell was executed on Wednesday, 12 April 1967, at 10:04 am. That photo in the article was taken in the early hours of the day, and they looked cold and bundled up for the protest. The mystery shot has some subjects throwing shadows in front of them, towards the post office building. Using some Kentucky windage and knowing those standing are facing almost due north, would make it late morning or early afternoon, if my understanding of celestial bodies and their movements are correct, or if I just lucked out.

I also remember that photographs weren’t typically snapped without good reason, because it was expensive (1960’s) and you wanted to save some shots for UFOs and Bigfoots. Even with the advent of the phone camera, there remain no useable images of space aliens or even a Sasquatch, but the depth and breadth of on-line photos of penises, is truly a hallmark of just how much we have advanced as a species.

So I think (guessing here, big time) that an employee could have had some expectation of a photo worthy event going on outside the gates, and took his Instamatic outside for a shot or two. He was allowed to leave once the ‘big event’ was over and what was left outside were the remnants of the crowd of young people, calmly waiting for a ride out of there. Or not.

orwhut said...

Farf,
I got lost somewhere in your explanation but, I loved it. It reminded me of Ellery Queen.

Quentin said...

The photo in question was taken by the official photographer for the prison(employed by the state).I think Matt can vouch for that.As for the occasion,thats the mystery.Also,Manson was at San Quentin MUCH longe than "a couple of days.

Quentin said...

The photo in question was taken by the official photographer for the prison(employed by the state).I think Matt can vouch for that.As for the occasion,thats the mystery.Also,Manson was at San Quentin MUCH longe than "a couple of days.

Matt said...

Quentin said...

The photo in question was taken by the official photographer for the prison(employed by the state). I think Matt can vouch for that.As for the occasion,thats the mystery. Also,Manson was at San Quentin MUCH longe than "a couple of days".


HI QUENTIN! Yes, I can vouch that it was taken by the official photographer for the prison. And yes, Manson was there for a while. I also doubt that groups of Golden Bears would congregate in front of the post office that faces the prison for no reason.

Quentin said...

Dont mean to sound like a dumb blonde, but what is a "Golden Bear" Guess I need to pay mor attention here....

Panamint Patty said...

Golden Bears are UCB ("Cal") students. It's their mascot. And they were/are notoriously liberal. Remember "naked guy?"

Quentin said...

Just went thru some archives... damn you guys are a bunch of supersleuths!!!pretty funny too

hippiekiller said...

I used to drive by San Quentin everyday for my job, for years. People are forever protesting whenever there's an execution, i.e. anti-death penalty folks. So, maybe this isn't even a Manson-related event.