According to artist Miggs Burroughs, Time magazine used “‘The Germans’ Testify” for the headline on his image of Nixon aides John Ehrlichman and Bob Haldeman in 1973, then decided to kill it.
Burroughs tells Westportnow.com: “The cover was printed and wrapped around a few hundred thousand issues of the magazine, ready to be distributed, before cooler heads at Time prevailed and had the entire issue pulled and destroyed for its offensive headline.”
Burroughs adds in an email reply to a few questions I had:
I had a total of 4 TIME covers, including Spiro Agnew’s resignation cover, Nixon’s impeachment cover, the death of Charles de Gaulle and a generic oil crisis cover.
For this July 30, 1973 cover, I was asked to portray these two “shadowy” and evil, oval office advisors (thus the gray skin) to Nixon during Watergate.
I was never told what the headline would be. I turned in the art the week before and they loved it and congratulated me on the cover that was scheduled to appear that next Monday.
At some point, and I am not sure when, the assistant to the art director called to tell me that the cover had been killed in mid production, but she had saved a press proof for me. I immediately drove to their New York office to retrieve it.
The artist adds that “this may be the only remaining copy of that cover.” Burroughs says he’s never told the spiked-cover story before.
Any Time alums from that era care to shed more light on this? Email me please.
* A Watergate-era Time magazine cover switch (westportnow.com)