African American soldier's Korean War photograph album, circa 1950-1953 .5 Linear Feet — 1 box — 2 items
Album contains 106 black-and-white and color photographs carefully arranged and mounted in a black-leaf photograph album, bound in Japanese-style lacquered covers inlaid with mother-of-pearl. Photographer may be an African American soldier named Tommy, who served in the U.S. Army's 511th Operation and Maintenance Service (OM SVC) Company during the Korean War. It is unclear whether the photographs are from Japan or Korea, as the latter was strongly influenced by Japanese culture until the end of World War II.
The images depict soldiers in and out of uniform and often engaged in recreational pursuits. Many photographs depict both white and African American soldiers together. Other subjects include local women and children; women with servicemen; the countryside and Japanese-style buildings; and family members and others back home. Included with the album is an early 20th century 10 1/2 x 14 inch portrait of four African American children.
Acquired as part of the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture at Duke University.