University Archives

Lot 189

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Massive Korean & Vietnam War-Era Photograph Collection, 380 Pcs!

An enormous collection of photographs primarily taken by American servicemen serving in South Korea, China, Vietnam, and Japan, ca. 1950-1979. A significant portion of the 380 total photographs date from the Korean War (1950-1953) and the Vietnam War (1955-1975). A handful of enlargements or modern reprints are scattered within the archive, but the overwhelming majority are vintage photographs. Some of the photos are annotated and were clearly sent home to family to illustrate daily life or local customs; a few more are annotated in Asian characters verso. Exhibiting expected wear, including scattered foxing, curling, and stains from scrapbook album adhesive, else very good to near fine. The smallest photographs measure 2.5" square while the largest measure 7.25" x 5.25."

This incredible photograph archive depicts every imaginable subject one might expect to find from such a collection, from those explicitly related to the military conflict at hand (bomb damage, military equipment, hospitals, jungle villages, snowy frontiers, scantily dressed refugees, etc.) to human interest (fooling around with war buddies, sight-seeing, interacting with locals, famous landmarks, etc.) Some of the material depicts the same unidentified Asian family, as well as a mixed race (white / Asian) couple. Did romance bloom abroad? Who were Lynn Snead and Sergeant John Patchey, who either appear in or who took the photographs in the archive? Just a few of the mysteries related to this archive, waiting to be unraveled.

The photographs can be linked to the following locations through handwritten captions:

South Korea

- Soyang River, near the North and South Korean border, site of the Battle of Soyang River, April - May 1951, in which North Korean and Chinese forces attempted to sever U.S. forces from their South Korean allies.

- Hwacheon Dam (written as "Hwachon Reservoir"). The site of an important U.S. / United Nations raid in May 1951 to expel North Koreans and Chinese from the dam.

- Cheorwon (written as "West Chorwon"), located in the northeast corner near the North Korean border.

- Chuncheon (written as "Chuachon"), located in the northeast corner near the North Korean border.

- Hongcheon (written as "Hongchon"), located in the northeast corner near the North Korean border.

- Yeoju (written as "Yoju"), located in the northwest corner near the North Korean border.

- Gimpo (written as "Kimpo"), located in the northwest corner near the North Korean border.

- Han River, also known as the Pukhan River, near the North and South Korean border.

Other Locations

- Vietnam

- Tokyo, Japan

- Great Wall of China

The archive, just briefly described here and with highlighted pictures above, merits HOURS of future research.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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September 30, 2020 10:30 AM EDT

Westport, CT, US

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From: To: Increments:
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$100 $299 $20
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$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $2,999 $200
$3,000 $4,999 $250
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$50,000 + $5,000