In the area under the Libeň Bridge, at the railway station at Maniny in Holešovice harbour, a collection point was created in 1942 where all requisitioned metal, mainly church bells from the entire Protectorate, was gathered, as well as memorials, commemorative plaques or metal construction material. In the summer of 1942, from this location five ships transported nearly ten thousand bells with a total weight of over a million and half tones to Germany. The bells transported from Prague were used by the Nazis mostly in northern German smelting works. This was due to the bronze contained in the alloy which was useful for the war industry. The actual transport of the bells took place under the supervision of the Reich's Office for Iron and Metal. It was estimated that nearly 90 000 bells were irreversibly lost during the Second World War in the Third Reich and occupied countries. According to the art historian Zdeněk Wirth, out of 12 500 collected bells, 10 316 were taken to Hamburg, of which 245 were from Prague. At the end of 1942 the river transport of bells from the Protectorate was interrupted and 2 184 bells were left in the Holešovice harbour, according to data provided by Zdeněk Wirth. In addition to the bells, metal sculptures, reliefs and commemorative plaques were also collected there for the same purpose.
After the war, Zdeněk Wirth described the situation of the salvaged metal at Maniny in the foreword to the 1946 Prague Calendar, accompanied by Sudek's photographs: “The most beautiful result was the dedication of some of the patriots who were ordered to carry out the transport of the requisitioned metal objects from the cemetery of bells and bronze sculptures at Maniny to foundries in northern Germany. In this way the colonels František and Vladimír Procházka and the storage administrator Josef Ptáčník saved 2 184 bells of B and C categories, including 287 from Prague and most of the bronze monumental statues and sculptures, busts, plates and plaques. […] It was a joyous surprise for the whole society when it became clear after the Prague revolution that precious sculptural works such as Myslbek's Rieger, Sucharda's Palacký, […] Štursa's Svatopluk Čech and Masaryk, […] and Myslbek's bust of Palacký […] were saved in final bronze casts. In addition to the bronzes, a number of stone sculptures were also saved from destruction; thus Šaloun's Rabbi Löw, and Sucharda's Palacký […] will take their places again.”
According to the surviving negatives, Sudek was primarily interested in sculptures while taking photographs at Maniny, for example of the monument of František Palacký by Stanislav Sucharda. The monument was supposed to be dismantled in 1942 based on a decision made by the occupation administration from the previous year. It is unclear when Sudek was taking pictures at Maniny. Like many other key figures of the Czech national revival, Palacký provided an important national motif during the era of the new occupation. Zdeněk Hojda writes: “For several brave people, Palacký's national charisma was worth risking their own security. They hid the monument and thus it was repaired in 1948 and after two more years took its place in public.”