This collection is made up of 4 albums (220 total pages) containing photographs related to the United States Army Air Corps and United States Air Force during World War II and the Korean War, including items showing the Tuskegee Airmen, and family photographs related to an African American family. Additional items, including manuscripts, newspaper clippings, and ephemera, are laid into each volume. One of the albums has embossed illustrations of three military planes and a military aviation badge on its front cover, along with the printed title "Tuskegee Army Flying School." Some of the materials indicate that the albums may have belonged to John Ellis Edwards, a native of Steubenville, Ohio.
The earliest materials pertain to the military service of African-American servicemen during World War II, including formal portraits of pilots and other members of the United States Army Air Corps who trained at the Tuskegee Institute and pictures of military aircraft. Other items concern United States Air Force operations during the Korean War, including numerous photographs of African-American and white servicemen attending dinners with one another and with local women; several images show a live performance by Les Brown & His Band of Renown and female singers. Many of these images also feature military aircraft and radio equipment, and some are scenic views of the Philippines and Okinawa. The albums also include photographs of civilian airplanes and aerial views of unidentified lands. A small number of the military photographs are official images licensed by the United States Army and Air Force.
The remaining items are primarily informal family photographs taken in Ohio, Atlanta, Georgia, and other unidentified locales between the 1950s and mid-1970s. Many show family members posing near a decorated Christmas tree, and others show automobiles and neighborhood streets. The latest photographs include color photographic prints and school photographs of children. Other non-military pictures include an autographed group portrait of Three B's and a Honey and photographic postcards with studio portraits.
Each of the albums contains several loose items such as additional photographs, manuscripts, newspaper clippings, and ephemera. Most of the clippings pertain to military aviation during World War II and the Korean War, particularly regarding the Tuskegee Airmen. Other printed items are invitations and graduation programs related to the Tuskegee Institute, a church program from Griffiss Air Force Base, colored illustrations of the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt and Bell P-39 Airacobra aircraft, a military memorandum about radio codes, and a sheet with several reproductions of United States Army and Air Force insignia. The collection includes three letters written by John Ellis Edwards, including a V-mail letter to his father.