Photo of the Day: We Need Your Help!

We’ve been hitting the photo archives here at the USO.  We have lots of historical information when it comes to what we do, but every now and again ever we get stumped.

This is a close-up shot from a picture of five service women participating in Armed Services Day in what looks to be Times Square in the 1940s. The exact year is unknown. Her uniform is long-sleeved, since the season dictates which uniform is worn.

But who or what is she a member of?  Can you identify the insignia/patches on her clothing?  Have similar pictures?  Leave a comment and help us solve the mystery of this woman…

27 thoughts on “Photo of the Day: We Need Your Help!

  1. Airmen Third Class, and had to be after the USAF was it’s own force, so possibly very late 40’s maybe even 50s, Khaki with epolettes, never wore them, and I went in in ’62, things had really changed by then but not the stripes….

  2. She is what we now call a mosquito wing. Current stripe grade is USAF E-2. I believe that the term for her rank was Airman Second Class.

  3. Definitely an Air Force Uniform – Airman is the rank, can’t tell year but I know when I was in the Star in the rank insignia wasn’t silver until you made Sargent. what an awesome pic though

  4. This is a post war photo – most likely from 1947-1949 or could be as late as the early 1950s during the korean conflict. She is wearing the “new” blue Air Force uniforms that were created when the Air Force became it’s own military branch in 1947. Prior to that, the women of the Army Air Force wore the same uniform as their Army counter parts, including a round WAC “hobby hat”.

  5. I can’t tell the color of her shirt, but if it’s blue, she’s an A3C (Airman Third Class). I wore one like it when I completed basic training in the WAF (Women in the Air Force) in August 1955. In fact, I still have a hat just like it! Will look for a picture if you’re interested.

  6. From the hair style and make-up, she looks like late ’50s era, in the Air Force. I wanted to join the military when I graduated from high school in the fifties. She is an airman 1st class.

  7. This is definitely not a photo from the Army Air Corps of the post WW-II era. I agree with the other comments indicating that the stripe on the uniform is what was classified as an A3C (Airman Third Class). The hat is the same hat worn by female Air Force personnel after the Air Force became a separate military service (1947). The hat piece is also that of all enlisted personnel. The picture would appear to be from the mid to lat 50’s or possibly even the early 60’s. From the light color appearance if the uniform if appears to be a summer Class A uniform worn in the 50’s and early 60’s.

  8. I still say she is an airman in the AF circa ’50s but I think she is and airman third class though.

  9. sorry 1949-1951, was the new blue uniform for the newly formed USAF not the Army Air Force. when I joined I was issued the old khaki. Thes new uniforms were not standard issue for several years. If you wanted to the new ones you had to buy them. i think I paid nearly $50 for the hat.

  10. Realize this is two years after the fact, but I just stumbled across this and want to set the record straight after having done major research reference WAF uniforms. This picture has to be late 50’s or early 60’s, judging from the shade of the uniform pictured and her hairstyle. This WAF is wearing the summer service dress, known as “Silver Tans” back in the day, which was an of a AF Shade 193 fabric and entered the inventory circa 1951. The WAF rank, which was three inches across, indicated she was an Airman 3rd Class. The rank did not change until 1967 when it became simply “Airman”. The Silver Tans were phased out in October 1965, after having been replaced by a summer weight blue shade 84 tropical worsted uniform, which matched the color of the winter uniform. Many had replaced their silver tans long before this. As far as a one-striper affording a set, I’ve noted from many WAF interviewed they sold their SIlver Tans to lower ranking airman when they got out. I wish more of them would’ve saved them!! For more info on the evolution of both WAF and male USAF uniforms, check out the book “Into the Blue” on, co-authored by yours truly.

  11. She is wearing a WAF uniform from the early 1950s. I enlisted in April 1951 and my squadron was the first to be issued the new blue uniforms. When I left basic training to go to tech school at what was then Oklahoma A&M, I was issued the blue uniform except Supply did not have a winter coat for me! My name then was Caroline Lindroth from Cooperstown NY. I’d love to hear from any WAFs from that time.

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