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Maybe because the past 12 months have felt more like a decade, it's already become a popular bit of revisionist history to describe 2020 as a normal year that suddenly went off the rails when pandemic shutdowns took hold and a string of police killings set off widespread racial justice protests. But the truth is 2020 was never going to be ordinary: it started with presidential impeachment proceedings and was always destined to end with a historically contentious general election. Still, no one could have predicted the harrowing months in between. Through all of it, ALM photographers were there to document these profound events, telling the human stories on the ground as history was being made in real time.

Clerk of the House Cheryl Johnson, and House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving lead a procession of Impeachment Managers to the Senate to deliver the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump in Washington, D.C., on January 15, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Elizabeth Holmes, founder of the defunct biotech startup Theranos and attorneys from Williams & Connley head into the Northern District of San Francisco on, January 13. Theranos president Ramesh Balwani and Holmes, both indicted by a grand jury, were to face a full trial in 2020 before the global pandemic. The pair face 11 criminal charges with a new trial date set for March 9th, 2021. Photo: Jason Doiy/ALM
A man sits alone in a subway car on April 2, 2020, 13 days after New York City was given a shelter in place order. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
A person walks across an empty street in Time Square on March 23, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
A scene familiar with gridlocked traffic is empty as a few cars make their afternoon commute across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Fransisco on March 27, 2020. Photo: Jason Doiy/ALM
A flight attendant wearing a face mask looks out the airplane window on a near empty flight on April 17th, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
Two men chat at a park in Baltimore, MD, while maintaining social distancing on April 7, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Homeless tents are set up six feet apart near city hall to promote social distancing in San Francisco as Mayor London Breed unveiled a plan to sanctioned tent sites between the library and the Asian Art Museum on March 6, 2020. Photo: Jason Doiy/ALM
A woman uses an ATM while a man behind her laughs at her for wearing a mask in Decatur, Georgia on July 17th, 2020. Lawsuits were filed against Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms over her mask mandate. Photo John Disney/ALM
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his team briefs New Yorkers on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic during a daily press conference in his Manhattan office on September 29, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
Ash from the September Creek Fire blankets the San Fransisco sky turning day to an eerie surreal continuous sunset. The fourth largest fire ever in the state burned nearly 400,000 acres and is attributed to climate change. Photo: Jason Doiy
Thousands march in Washington, D.C. protesting police brutality and the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota at the hands of local police, on June 6, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
On the third consecutive night of unrest George Floyd Protestors and the NYPD stand face to face in Union Square on May 30, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
Black Lives Matter protesters march through the financial district of Manhattan on June 2, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
Thousands march in Washington, D.C. protesting police brutality and the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota at the hands of local police, on June 6, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Protestors set fire to an NYPD squad car in New York City on May 30, 2020. Peaceful protests quickly turned violent when demonstrators reacted to an officer spraying pepper spray into the crowd. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
The body of Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg arrives at the U.S. Supreme Court to lie in repose for two days, where the casket remained on view at the top steps of the Court’s plaza for the public to pay their respects, on September 23, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Neva Gotwals, 8, left, and her mother Joelle Gotwals, an attorney, right, pay their respects as the body of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg lies in repose under the Portico of the U.S. Supreme Court on September 23, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
A demonstrator protesting the confirmation of judge Amy Coney Barrett gets arrested on October 12, 2020. Protesters gathered outside the U.S. Supreme Court building and walked to the Dirksent Senate office building where they blocked the entrance to the building. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Trump’s nominee to be Associate Justice at the U.S. Supreme Court, testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during her confirmation hearing in Washington, on October 13, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Confirmation hearing for Martin Jenkins to Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court on November 11, 2020. He is the first openly gay Associate Justice to the California Supreme Court. Photo: Jason Doiy/ALM
People cast their ballot at Camden Yards Stadium in Baltimore, MD, during early voting in the 2020 Presidential Election, on October 30, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
New Yorkers take to the streets of Times Square to celebrate the victory of Joseph Biden as President-elect and Kamala Harris as Vice President-elect on November 7, 2020. Photo: Ryland West/ALM
People gather at Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House, and surrounding areas, in Washington, D.C., to celebrate the victory of President-elect Joe Biden, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, on November 7, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
Supporters of President Donald Trump hold a rally at Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington D.C. a day before the scheduled Million MAGA March, on November 13, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM
People gather at Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House, and surrounding areas, in Washington, D.C., to celebrate the victory of President-elect Joe Biden, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, on November 7, 2020. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM