This large photo album (15 ¼” x 11 ½”), with an embossed, faux-leather cover and PHOTOGRAPHS spelled out against a gold background, exhibits some scuffing on the front cover, and some edge wear and corner wear. The album contains 137 photographs, all but two of which measure 5” x 3 ½” or, in a few instances, 5 ¾” x 3 ½”. There are also a few newspaper clippings, two of which are tipped into the album; the rest are loose. One of the tipped-in clippings is also represented in the album by the 8” X 10” glossy which shows the identical scene.
The album depicts a number of Massachusetts and New England marching bands, drum & bugle corps, and fife and drum corps. We see photographs of various individuals in the bands and corps, majorettes and male baton-twirlers strutting their stuff, various parades and competitions in which the bands performed, and street scenes associated with these spectacles. The corps most featured in the album is sponsored by the Gilbert Perry Post, No. 115, VFW, from Attleboro, Massachusetts, and seems to be the ostensible subject of the album, but there are many other bands and performers depicted. Camaraderie looks as important as competition. While the album begins in 1944 (and seems to skip over 1945 completely), a highlight is the National Convention, held in Boston from September 1 to September 7, 1946. The U.S.S. Missouri has docked in Boston Harbor, and the girls (most of the subjects depicted in the corps are young women) have a grand time exploring the ship, and enticing groups of sailors and officers to pose for them.
The photos are well-framed, for the most part unfaded, and depict not only the action during the parades and competitions, but also the fun behind the scenes. Light leaks do mar a few of the photos. One favorite photo shows four of the young women posing on the hood of a car, each smoking a cigar. Other photos show baton-twirlers and majorettes, singly or together, in iconic poses.
All in all, a fun album, a bit of normalcy in a turbulent time.