Soldier in Dutch New Guinea, 1945
Click here to view it larger.
What it is:
Photo measuring approx. 2.75 x 4.5 inches.
What I know about it:
Click here for a scan of the back, and see comments below.
What I find interesting about this, besides, obviously, the image, is the information stamped on the back. This photo passed inspection! I suppose we aren’t looking at anything top secret that couldn’t be sent home. According to a military history buff message board (the internet never ceases to amaze me), Army Base 2446 was at Hollandia, Dutch New Guinea, which is now known as Jayapura, Indonesia. It was an important Japanese military base until the U.S. seized it on May 22, 1944. The numbers “8″ and “45″ are also stamped on the back, and I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that’s the date, August 1945. (Even if it isn’t, that would be in the ballpark, anyway.) Armistice with Japan (V-J day) was August 14, and the formal Japanese surrender was September 2. So if this is August 1945, it would have been within days or weeks of the end of the war. I can only imagine the heightened times this man was experiencing right then and there. By the way, can anyone explain his arms to me? It looks like they change colors at about his elbows, and not in the natural way of a tan line. Yet his forearms match his face and chest. Is that some sort of camouflage?