By Josh BlevinsThe world’s most famous photo of an industrial crane took off from the Capitol building in Washington, DC, on Thursday, but a photographer who was there and recorded it could have captured the moment in a completely different way.
Hammer Museum Photography, which works in conjunction with the Smithsonian Institution, posted a video to YouTube on Wednesday that shows a crane hoisting an oversized metal gate over a riverbed in the District, as it is often done.
The gate was erected by the U.S. Forest Service and the Federal Aviation Administration to allow helicopters to land on the riverbed to remove debris from the National Mall and other buildings.
The crane’s pilot, John D. Miller, is seen in the video climbing to the top of the gate and pointing to a large pile of rubble, which is now part of the site of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.
Miller, who has been working with the museum for nearly a decade, says that while he was standing on the bridge railing, the crane pulled up and lifted up a large metal gate.
The crane then lowered itself into the river bed, and Miller says the gate began to fall apart.
“It looked like it would fall apart,” Miller said, “but it fell apart, fell apart so much.”
He said that when he and a photographer from the Smithsonian and other people started to make out, it seemed like the crane was lifting up all of the rubble.
The video, which was uploaded on Wednesday afternoon, has been viewed more than 10 million times.
Miller said that the crane’s crane operator was the first to see it and told him to go to the White House.
Miller says he took the video because he wants the public to know what happens when an industrial structure collapses.
“I’m just so glad that someone is filming this, and they know what it looks like,” Miller told The Washington Post.
“If you’re looking for something like that, you should look at the other side of the Capitol.”
Miller said the crane is part of a project called the National Monument and Preservation, which the Smithsonian is working on to preserve the historical significance of the historic buildings and their artifacts.
“We are really hoping to get that crane up there for the public, for the general public to take a look at,” he said.
The Smithsonian’s website says that the National Museum is dedicated to preserving the heritage of American architecture, architecture, and engineering, as well as the history of the United States.