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Online Finds During COVID-19: Tuskegee Airmen Yearbook, SPARS bracelet, & More!


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Hello All,

Here are some of my favorite finds so far this year. All of these came from online sources, since most of the events I'd usually attend in person have been closed down due to COVID-19 concerns. There's still good stuff out there!!!

 

Signed & Inscribed Tuskegee Army Air Field Class 44 D-E-F Yearbook

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I am fairly certain this particular book belonged to Robert "Bob" Williams, the Tuskegee Airman behind the production of the 1990's HBO Movie "Tuskegee Airmen". During WW2 he flew in the 100th Fighter Squadron, with two FW-190 kills and award the Distinguished Flying Cross. 

 

The book is signed/inscribed by about 40 other pilots/cadets who attended flight school for classes 44D, 44E, and 44F. 9 of the pilots who signed this book were later killed in training accidents or killed-in-action in the ETO. 

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US Coast Guard SPARS ID bracelet- Belonged to 1 of only approximately 2,000 US Coast Guard SPARS to serve "overseas" duty in the territories of Hawaii and Alaska during WW2. After serving in the Coast Guard, she also served for a time in the US Navy, and this bracelet reflects her service in both branches.

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18 hours ago, beerdragon54 said:

Killer stuff!! The Tuskegee airmen book is awesome!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

THANKS! When researching the names of the pilots that signed it, I was surprised to see just how high the mortality rate was for them. Nearly 25% of them were killed within a year. Absolutely crazy. Robert Robinson Jr., who inscribed the back of the book, was KIA in March 1945 while escorting a bombing mission to Berlin. 4 of the Tuskegee Airmen's kills are also represented by the pilots who signed the book, including Thomas W. Jefferson (2 kills in late April 1945), Bertram W. Wilson (shot down an FW-190), and Charles V. Brantley (shot down an ME-262 jet the same day as 2 other Tuskegee Airmen pilots claimed ME-262 kills). 

 

Lots of history in there!

 

Also, forgot to mention that only around 30 Merchant Marine Distinguished Service Medals were awarded posthumously during WW2, making the citation above one of the rarest WW2 medal related items.

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All of your finds are excellent pieces of history, congratulations on being their caretaker.

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*

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