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Walter W. Cummings papers

Guide to the Walter W. Cummings papers

Collection number: HMC-0951.
Creator: Cummings, Walter W.
Title: Walter W. Cummings papers.
Dates: 1939-1945.
Volume of collection: 0.46 cubic feet.
Language of materials: Materials in the collection are in English.
Collection summary: Photograph album and papers of a U.S. Army Air Forces soldier stationed in Dutch Harbor during World War II.

Biographical note:
Walter W. Cummings was from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the U. S. Army at Philadelphia on January 22, 1943, and trained at the radio school at Camp Croft, South Carolina, as a member of Company B, 26th Battalion, 8th Infantry Training Regiment. Cummings later served in the Army Air Forces at Fort Mears in Dutch Harbor, Alaska. Walter Cummings died in Wallingford, Pennsylvania, in 2000.

Collection description:
The collection consists of the contents of a World War II era photograph album, as well as papers and memorabilia items of U. S. Army Air Forces soldier Walter Cummings. The collection contains: the original photograph album cover; 215 original black and white prints; military papers, memorabilia items. The military papers include: a soldier’s individual pay record booklet, a newsletter, ration cards, a baggage inspection tag, and a base pass. Memorabilia items include: uniform patches, a good conduct medal, ribbons, buttons, pins, tickets, matchbooks, vehicle licenses, an illustrated pillow cover, bullet shells, and a piece of metal shrapnel. Subjects of the photographs include: Walter Cummings, fellow soldiers, and buildings, aircraft and other facilities at Fort Mears; Dutch Harbor; Unalaska; and scenery on Unalaska and Amaknak Islands.

Arrangement: The collection is arranged by type of material.

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

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: Walter W. Cummings papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Separated materials: Publications were removed from the collection and selected items were added to the Consortium Library’s Rare Books collection.

Acquisition note: Archives and Special Collections purchased the collection on eBay in 2007.

Processing information: This collection was described by Jeffrey Sinnott in 2007. The guide to the collection was converted to current standard and publications removed by Gwen Higgins in 2017.

Container list:



Description Date
Oversize Original album cover (Alaska map illustration on wood) undated
1/1 Xerographic copy of the original album, 29 pages undated, 1943, 1945
1/2 Photographs undated, 1943-1945
1/3 Papers: military orders; photography permit; newspaper photograph clipping of the Croft Radio School at Camp Croft, Spartanburg, South Carolina 1943, 1945
1/4 Memorabilia: Soldier’s Individual Pay Record booklet; baggage inspection tag; War Department tobacco ration cards (2 cards); Indiantown Gap Military Reservation, Pennsylvania, Class A Pass; trade tickets from the Ship’s Service Department, Naval Operating Base, Dutch Harbor, Alaska (8 tickets); service club, raffle, and theater tickets (6 tickets); Dutch Harbor matchbooks (2 items); Pennsylvania vehicle license and registration cards (6 cards) undated, 1939-1941
1/5 Military shoulder patches (39 different). U. S. Army Divisions: 2nd, 17th, 34th, 78th, 93rd-99th, and 101st. Service Commands: 1st-5th, Airborne, Replacement and School, Alaska Defense, and Persian Gulf. Third Army, Second Army Corps, Army Service Forces, Army Air Forces, Ninth Army Air Force, Task Force Victory, Desert Air Force. Basic Force Elements: Engineer Amphibian Units and Port of Embarkation. Army Air Forces specialist sleeve insignia patches (5 different: engineering, armament, communications, photography and weather). Honorable discharge emblems (9 patches). Rank (private) and overseas service bars patches undated
1/6 Army Good Conduct Medal undated
1/7 Color illustrated Alaska cloth pillow cover with fringe and a poem about friendship undated
1/8 Service ribbons, buttons, and pins undated
1/9 Bullet shells (2 different) an d metal shrapnel (1 piece)




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