• Due to renovations to our vault, access to our collections is limited until further notice. Please contact us for more information.

William H. Francis photograph album

Guide to the William H. Francis photograph album
undated, 1941-1942

Collection number: HMC-0943.
Creator: Francis, William H.
Title: William H. Francis photograph album.
Dates: undated, 1941-1942.
Volume of collection: 0.25 cubic feet.
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Collection summary: Photograph album of a U. S. Army Air Corps officer who served in the Aleutians with 343rd Fighter Group.

Biographical note:
William H. Francis was from Decatur, Tennessee. He graduated from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, in 1939. Francis then taught and coached athletics at the high school in Savannah, Tennessee. He enlisted in the U. S. Army Air Corps and graduated from the armament school at Lowry Field in Denver, Colorado, in June 1941. He then trained at the Bendix Aviation Corporation in South Bend, Indiana, before receiving his commission as a second lieutenant at Tyndall Field, Florida in October 1941. Francis then served in Alaska in the 343rd Fighter Group at Elmendorf Field on Fort Richardson, and in the Aleutian Islands.

Collection description:
The collection consists of the contents of a World War II era photograph album of U. S. Army Air Corps officer William H. Francis. The collection contains: 104 original black and white prints; 22 black and white Alaska commercial tourist prints; 11 black and white negatives; a black and white post card portrait of Lawrence Welk autographed by him in Chicago; Francis’  armament school diploma from the U. S. Army Air Corps Technical School at Lowry Field; a humorous 343rd Fighter Group diploma for the School of Worn Out Aleutian Pilots (WOAP’s), commanded by Lt. Colonel J. S. Chennault; a souvenir program for the dedication ceremony and barbecue for the Kashim Club at Elmendorf Field; tickets for a Kashim Club Kapers event; a small illustrated Japanese language booklet; a copy of a newspaper clipping concerning Francis’ commission as an officer at Tyndall Field on October 13, 1941; an Eastern Airlines Silver Fleet baggage sticker; a magazine clipping concerning the burro mascot of the Texas Aviation School; and a clipping of an article by Lt. Colonel D. V. Gaffney of Ladd Field in Fairbanks with his photo portrait. Subjects of the photographs include: William Francis and fellow soldiers and airmen; six class photos of the Air Corps Technical School armament classes which graduated on June 6, 1941 (classes 8-41A and 1-41-A-F); aerial views; aircraft; skiing; state capitols and other buildings; and scenery. The negatives are primarily of a small girl and her mother.

Arrangement: The contents of the original album are arranged by type of material.

Alternative formats: A xerographic copy of the original album was made to indicate the original order of the materials.

Digitized copies: This collection has not been digitized. For information about obtaining digital copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Rights note: Archives and Special Collections does not own copyright to the collection.

Preferred citation: William H. Francis photograph album, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Acquisition note: The collection was purchased on eBay by the Archives in 2006.

Processing information: This collection was described by Jeffrey Sinnott in 2007. The guide to the collection was converted to current standard by Gwen Sieja in 2015.

Comments are closed.