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THE WAR IS HERE: NEWARK 1967

Photographs by Bud Lee
Edited, designed, and text by Chris Campion
Foreword by Mayor Ras J. Baraka
Afterword by Ellene Furr

Published by ZE Books

The War is Here: Newark 1967 | Bud Lee | Chris Campion book cover

July 1967. After the arrest, beating, and imprisonment of cab driver John Smith by local police, the city of Newark—already a tinderbox—became a hotbed of protest and retaliation. 

 

Bud Lee, a 26-year-old novice photographer for Life magazine, was called upon to cover the civic uprising in Newark as it broke out. The War Is Here documents the several days Bud Lee spent in Newark. These photographs capture life in a city transformed into an urban war zone. Lee witnessed first-hand two policemen shoot a man named Billy Furr in the back. Lee’s dramatic images of his killing ran in Life. The same bullets also hit and wounded a 12-year-old boy named Joey Bass Jr., who had been playing at a nearby intersection.

 

Lee’s stark, emotional image of Bass, lying bleeding and contorted in pain on dirty concrete, ran on the July 28, 1967 cover of Life, sparking a national conversation on race and police violence and becoming the defining image of the “long, hot summer” of ’67—a summer of fire and fury, protest and rage across the country.

 

Over half a century later, Bud Lee’s raw, desolate, and empathetic photographs of the people of Newark, at a turning point in the city’s history, continue to resonate.

Praise for The War Is Here

 

“The stirring images within The War is Here bring Newark’s summer of 1967 back to life in vivid detail, reminding us that the past is with us.”

—Senator Cory Booker (NJ)

"Fifty-six years later, the images resonate in their ability to capture with depth and honesty the particularities of a historical moment, and in their disturbing timeliness. This is powerful.”

Publishers Weekly

 

“Lee’s pictures opened up a nationwide debate about police violence. The War Is Here: Newark 1967 collects those images, many of them unpublished, and reinhabits not only the fear and the violence—but also … the defiance of that bloody week in Newark history.”

—Tim Adams, The Observer

 

“The War Is Here represents one of the most comprehensive collections of photos about the 1967 Newark Rebellion and Billy Furr that I have ever seen.”

—Junius Williams, Official Newark Historian

 

“Bud Lee was a graphic storyteller who made informative, often gripping, pictures of despair and anger."

—Anne Wilkes Curator of Photography Emerita at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston 

“Bud Lee was a reporter. He wasn't seeking to impress you with his singular vision. He was in Newark to look, listen, and report on the complex, tragic events unfolding in front of him. And he did his job, but it’s the way that Bud Lee addressed the tragedy that sets him apart. We see that in The War Is Here.”

—Eugene Richards, photojournalist, author of Cocaine True, Cocaine Blue and War Is Personal

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