69ºF

75th anniversary of Japan surrender: Iconic photos just as powerful today

Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)

It happened in less than 30 minutes, but that’s all it took to create one of the most famous moments in history.

It might not have been a long ceremony aboard the USS Missouri on Sept. 2, 1945, but it was one of the most significant ever, producing images that will forever be etched in the minds of Americans and others around the world who celebrated that day.

Wednesday is the 75th anniversary of Japan signing its surrender documents, a ceremony in Tokyo Bay that was broadcast around the world and marked the official end of World War II.

Whether in color or in black and white, the photos are just as striking 75 years later. Take a look back on that day by viewing the photos below.

Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Americans celebrate as Japan officially signs surrender documents on Sept. 2, 1945.
Americans celebrate as Japan officially signs surrender documents on Sept. 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945 (Getty Images)
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945.
Scenes aboard the USS Missouri as Japan signed its official surrender documents to end World War II on Sept 2, 1945. (Getty Images)

About the Author: