Frans Soemarto Mendoer, Capture the Moment Proclamation 45
Photography is not just a witness to history, but also the historical evidence of human life and the events that surrounded him. In the presence of photographs, many people can be reminded and made aware of a matter. Frans Soemarto Mendoer very understanding it. That's why, after receiving word from a source at Japan Asia Raya newspaper that there will be an important event in the residence of Sukarno, Frans moving directly toward the house numbered 56 on the Road East Pegangsaan was carrying his Leica camera. And indeed, that morning, Friday, August 17, 1945, an important event took place there: reading the text of the proclamation of independence of Indonesia by Sukarno.
At that time Frank has only the remaining three pieces of the film plate. So from that historic event, he only can capture the three scenes. The first, the scene Sukarno read the text of the proclamation. Secondly, the flag-raising scene by Hendraningrat Latif, a member of PETA. And third, hectic atmosphere of the youth who witnessed the flag raising. Upon completion of the journalist's job, Frank hurried to leave the residence because the Sukarno realized that the Japanese army was hunting him.
Frank became the only person to capture the moment was sacred because Alexius Impurung Mendoer Alex, his brother who had also photographed the historic procession, had to give up his camera seized by the Japanese army.
And when the Japanese army met Frank to ask for photographic negatives Sukarno, who was reading the text of the proclamation, Frank admitted that negative film has been taken by the Barisan Pioneers. Whereas photographic negative events that is very important that he kept hidden in a way to bury in the ground, near a tree in the backyard of Asia Raya newspaper office. If only the film's negative was deprived of the Japanese army, then maybe the present generation and generations to come will not know what the sacred event.
In fact, the presence of Sukarno Frans at home at that time, a senior journalist Alwi Shahab wrote "If there is no Frans Mendoer, then we will not have a photo documentation of the events was the proclamation of independence ..." The article was published in the Republika daily edition of Sunday, August 14 2005, three days before the Anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence of the Republic of Indonesia to 60.
Washing three historic photo was also not easy because it prevented the Japanese. Frans with Alex was forced to secretly have to settle, climbing trees at night, and jumped over the fence next to the office Domei (now the AFP news agency) to get to a photo lab to print the photos. In fact, when two brothers were captured by Japanese soldiers, they will be imprisoned, even executed.
Photo of Indonesia's reading of the Declaration of Independence was first published in the Daily Independent on 20 February 1946, more than half a year after its manufacture. Film negative visual record of it now could not be found anymore. There are allegations that the film negatives were destroyed along with all documentation owned news agency Antara that burned in the incident in 1965. Back then, the army took the entire collection of negatives and prints photo-owned Antara and burned.
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