World War One 1st Division Portrait Photo – First US Soldier to Fire During WWI! Alex Arch

The world of WWI photo collecting is becoming increasingly expensive; good identified photos are beginning to bring big bucks in the eBay world.  I was lucky enough to “steal” this gem of a portrait from the realm of auction obscurity.  Identified to a Sgt. Alex Arch of C Co.  6th Field Artillery, 1st Division.  I was blown away when I learned that Mr. Arch was the first US soldier to fire against the Germans on October 23rd, 1917.  He technically pulled the firing cord of a French 75mm while in Xanrey in the Luneville Section.  A great addition to the collection!


WWI Photo – Super Rare 3rd Air Park Patch Photo in Vichy France

Sometimes an obscure patch shot slips through the cracks of the myriad listings on ebay.  In this case, I picked up a VERY rare shot of two members of the 255th Aero Squadron, 3rd Air Park of the 2nd Pursuit Group posing in a Vichy, France studio.  I’ve only seen two or three photographic examples of the 3rd Air Park shoulder patch insignia (SSI, remember?) in wear before.  This is a spectacular example, save for a minor fold and a small tear to the corner.  For future reference, the 3rd Air Park patch resembles #3 billiards ball on an underlain circular patch.

3rd Air Park Patch