The original owner of this rare USS Indianapolis CA 35 photo album, Robert F Hickman, served on the Indianapolis as a former crew member [prior to the sinking crew] in the USMC contingent of the ship and then went on to become a paramarine during the war and was WIA in 1943 in the Solomon Islands - [Thank you Bob Hudson for the assist with the research] making this a pretty rare and special photo album in my opinion- he served on the Indy after Sea School and before parachute school. it is difficult to photograph it and impossible to scan it without taking it apart. It is in great shape, but far too fragile to attempt either without risk of damage.
Photo albums of this sort exist for quite a few different ships, but this one is special to me for its Indianapolis association, and also the fact that it belonged to a USMC member, who served aboard the ship and went on to be a decorated paramarine who served in the Solomon Islands campaigns. What I believe would make this an even harder to find memento than say a sailor's photo album of this ship is the typical Marine contingent was a significantly smaller part of the crew - of the entire crew, at the time of the sinking only 39 men made up the Marine contingent [at the time of the sinking the wartime crew total was 1196 men on board]. I am not sure how many marines would have constituted the total contingent pre war crew. There is a photo of 28 Marines in this album standing at attention for a Saturday am inspection [as captioned] In addition, Paramarine's were part of a very small and elite force during the war when compared to the total number of Marines in the military fighting.
There are approximately 100 photos and even more assorted ephemera in it. Not all the photos are Indy ship specific [this is a typical of many photo albums from the era along with a few photos of the ships, we have found that most servicemen of the time took photos of hula girls, the islands, and sightseeing trips during the pre war era but it really depended on the personal tastes of the man who took the pictures as to what makes up each individual album...]