About 207 photos total...
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Each link will open a page with an average of 8 - 15 photos, in general.
The width of each photo is usually 800 pixels, be patient if you have a slow connection.
Many of these photos are available in a larger resolution by request for a fee, permission is required to use any of these photos for any purpose other than viewing them here or printing/saving a copy for your own personal, non-commercial use. Do not use any of these for any other website without express permission.
All photos were taken by my late dad (Francis Florianz, 1924-88), except, of course, the ones taken of him by unidentified army buddies.
My father turned 18 in the summer of 1942, and was drafted in 1943 into the U.S. Army, where he served until the end of the war, in the Army Air Corps. He was part of the sweep that began in Africa, including Tunis, and then into Italy. After the war he went into the Merchant Marines for a year and visited South America, though there are no known photos of his time there. He married my mom in June, 1947. He, too, was a shutterbug and developed his own negatives. He made some of these into prints for his "Service Album", but some other photos that I have here only exist as negatives. Most all of them were scanned from the negatives. On the back of one print he mentions Foggia, Italy as one of his bases, and being in (or associated with) the 421st Signal Company (but see below: his papers mention "Company A 710"). From what it appears, though, by the quantity of pictures, he was stationed in Florence for a longer time. These events would probably have put him in the timeline mentioned on this external site of the 15th Air Force:
15th Air Force - World War II - Italy
I recently located his "Honorable Discharge" papers, and here are the actual details:
Serial #32 878 684 Private First Class - Company A 710 Signal Squadron Battalion
Discharged 15 November 1945 - AAF ORD Greensboro, North Carolina
Induction: 30 Mar 43   Active service: 6 Apr 43 into Camp Upton, NY
Specialty: Radio Operator High Speed 766
Campaign: Rome-Arno North Appennines Po Valley
I do have one tiny print that's dated "Africa, February 1944". He served for a bit over a year stateside, and didn't arrive in Africa until February, 1944 (according to his papers also). His company headed (apparently) shortly afterwards to Italy. He served overseas for just over 1 1/2 years. As a radio operator, I believe he flew on missions as well, though there are only a few shots of aircraft on this entire site (so please don't be disappointed if that's what you were looking for). Most of these shots seem to have been taken during R&R times, recreation, "tourism", and a bit of general tom-foolery, it seems they made the best of it when they were able.
The locations are generally in Italy (though there are quite a few from Cannes, France). The bases in Italy do include Foggia, but mostly Florence, which was probably his home base for a longer time. Other locations include Corsica, Rome, Pisa, and Pompeii. More captions have been added to these now, thanks to having located his "Service Album". Please note: these captions may not all be correct, as there were city names on each page of the album, but I'm not sure that every photo on a specific page was taken there.
These photos were all scanned from odd-format black & white negatives with a negative scanner, except for the last two sets at the end of the page. These last two sets were scanned from the few scannable prints I have from him which have additional images not duplicated in the set of negatives. There were a few dozen that could not be scanned at all due to quality, focus, contrast, double exposures, etc.
In the set of 172 negatives which did get scanned, I often ran into problems such as mold, chemical stains, chips on the emulsion, developing errors, focus problems, etc.
However, I included all of them I deemed worthwhile, and some are of very good quality for their age. On quite a few, I edited out the black spots, dust, etc. within reason, except for the ones which were too full of glitches, which I left as they were. I do not know exactly the "where" or the "when" of the majority of these photos, though some should be quite obvious due to their being taken at universally known landmarks. Being negatives, I had no captions to go by, and they were all cut up into individual negatives and put into a metal can, so there was no way for me to organize them into any sequence. Some of them, considering the way they were piled up in the can, may actually be in sequence, but I'm sure some of the photos will jump back and forth time- and place-wise looking at them in the order they are presented on the web pages. I can therefore offer limited captions, and perhaps poor guesses in many cases. PLEASE - if anyone visiting here knows with reasonable certainty more information on any of these, write me and let me know, mentioning the specific photos in question. I will add your name to the captions, such as: "Per Tony C. from Cleveland - this is Naples, 1944".
Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy the collection.
I broke these galleries up in to 8 subcategories while I was scanning the negatives and now have them segregated this way to help in finding any particular one more easily if I need to. There may be some overlap, but it seemed to work pretty well.
Architecture - Distinctly recognizable sites (perhaps), scenes, monuments, style, etc.
Architecture - Part I
Architecture - Part II
Architecture - Part III
Dad - Photos including my father as a subject.
Dad - Part I
Dad - Part II
Equipment - Military equipment, bases / buildings and fellow army buddies.
Equipment - Part I
Equipment - Part II
Land - City & rural landscapes, including civilians & recreational shots.
Land - Part I
Land - Part II
Pisa - Leaning tower of Pisa (just 3 photos, I originally thought there would be more).
Leaning tower of Pisa
Rubble - Several shots showing war damage as the major component.
Rubble / War damage
Train - Photos including rail or rail subjects.
Train / rail subjects
Water - Photos including water as the dominant subject.
Water: river, beach, canal
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Extra - 6 more photos (in addition to the 172), cropped from longer & curled negatives.
Scanned prints - From old, faded prints of photos not included in the above sets.
With these sets, the photo count should be right around 207, in total.
Scanned prints - Onboard ship
Scanned prints - Italy
That's the extent of it for now... this is tentatively the end of the collection...
If I discover more (perhaps which my mom may have somewhere), I will post them later...
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