Photos of historic WWII surrender, never published, found

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Some images from the Japanese surrender to Gen. Douglas MacArthur, 60 years ago Sept. 2, are burned into the world's photo album. Taken from above or from the side, the pictures show MacArthur or a Japanese representative signing papers at a desk on the deck of the battleship USS Missouri. Today, a fresh perspective on the historic event has emerged, courtesy of a cache of pictures found by a metro Atlanta man in a dusty attic in San Diego. All but one of the pictures, taken by an unknown Navy photographer, have never been published, a Navy historian said Friday.

The images show the surrender from a different angle and candid moments before and after the historic event. Some, taken at deck level, reveal closeups of grim-faced Japanese military and government officials. Others show sailors "at ease" just before the official ceremony. One shows a Russian officer smiling broadly.

John Sidney Sampson, 62, said he found the photos in a sealed manila envelope in San Diego, while helping clean the attic of a home owned by a family friend, Margaret McCain LaGrange. She is the niece of Admiral John Sidney McCain Sr., who was present at the surrender and was the grandfather of Sen. John S. McCain (R-Ariz.). Sampson said LaGrange gave him the photos because his own father, Navy Capt. William Sampson, had served as an aide to the senior McCain.

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