Mar 30, 2017 - Sale 2441

Sale 2441 - Lot 414

Price Realized: $ 8,450
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 3,000 - $ 4,000
(MILITARY--WORLD WAR II.) TUSKEGEE AIRMEN. Scrapbook collection of 144 photographs of various size, taken at Tuskegee during the period of training for the Airmen. Most of the photographs are 3 x 5, some larger and some smaller. The condition is generally very good, but the photos were removed from an old scrapbook and some of the photos have some residual adhesive on the reverse. not as bad as it sounds; but definitely should be seen. Tuskegee, AL, 1941-1945

Additional Details

A wonderful scrapbook assembled over the period of 1941 to 1945, showing the earliest beginnings of the building and growth of the Tuskegee Flying School, right through to its completion. Unfortunately we do not know who assembled the scrapbook, though it might be possible to identify at least a few of the individuals from other known photographs from this period. A few individuals, like pilot Lieutenant Parnell, are identified, but we do not know if one of them might be the creator of the scrap book. There are images of the leveling off of the ground to make the airstrips and buildings, even while training flights were being conducted; with great shots of the pilots by their planes. The Air Field was designed by the African American architect Hilyard Robinson and was almost all finished within the year. Construction began on July 12, 1941 and one can see in the photographs, the bulldozers at work. There are a number of images of the airmen by their planes, and at various jobs, as well as informal poses with girlfriends and buddies. Training flights began in November of the same year, using the P17 biplane and the BT-13 monoplane as the basic trainer. An example of the latter can be seen suspended from the ceiling at the newly opened National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. The need to get the airmen airborne was such that training was conducted even though construction was nowhere near completion. A month or so later, in late July, the U.S. Air Corps formally ordered the Air Corps Advanced Flying School to be activated at Tuskegee, later designated the Tuskegee Advanced Flying School, Army Air Forces Advanced Flying School and the Air Forces Pilot School. By September 1943, Tuskegee had 4 runways & a total of 225 buildings.