Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
  • Unit of Service: 477th Composite Group
  • Location of Service: Tuskegee, Alabama; Seymour, Indiana
  • Highest Rank: First Lieutenant

View full service history

"The white boys went in at 18; we couldn't come in unless you had a college degree." (9:29)

For Quentin Smith, World War II was a series of delayed actions. He enlisted hoping to become a flight instructor and he did land in the newly formed company of black airman in Tuskegee, Alabama. But the wheels of bureaucracy moved slowly, with officials insisting that ready-to-fly pilots had to wait until other members of the crew were trained, claiming that no white navigator or gunner would take orders from a black pilot. It took a visit from First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt to get the Army Air Force to ship the Tuskegee Airmen to Europe, where they compiled an enviable record.

Quentin Smith Collection
Interview / Recording

Transcript: XML

About this Item

Title

  • Quentin Smith Collection

Names

  • Smith, Quentin
  • Virginia Dodge
  • Sanders, Timothy
  • Lugar, Richard
  • U.S. Senate/Richard Lugar
  • National Court Reporters Association (NCRA)

State of Birth

  • TX

Home State

  • IN

Headings

  • -  Smith, Quentin
  • -  World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal Narratives
  • -  United States. Army Air Forces/Corps.

Notes

  • -  Member of the Tuskegee Airmen.

Repository

  • Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Gender

  • Male

Race

  • Black or African American

Status

  • Veteran

Service History

  • World War, 1939-1945

    • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
    • Unit of Service: 477th Composite Group
    • Location of Service: Tuskegee, Alabama; Seymour, Indiana
    • Highest Rank: First Lieutenant
    • Dates of Service: 1942-1945
    • Entrance into Service: Enlisted
    • Military Status: Veteran

Materials

  • Audio: Audio Cassette [1 item] -- Oral history interview (collected 03/12/2002)
  • Audio: CD [2 items] -- Reference copy (collected 11/21/2005)
  • Computer File: Floppy Disk [1 item] -- Electronic file of manuscript (collected 4/8/2006)
  • Manuscript: Transcript [1 item] -- Transcription of audio recording (collected 04/08/2006)

Collection Number

  • AFC/2001/001/3001

Cite as

  • Quentin Smith Collection (AFC/2001/001/3001), Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Online Format

  • audio
  • online text

Additional Metadata Formats

Rights & Access

Using VHP Material in Publication or Exhibition

The Veterans History Project (VHP) at the Library of Congress collects, preserves and makes accessible the firsthand recollections of U.S. military veterans who served from World War I through more recent conflicts and peacekeeping missions, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand what they saw, did and felt during their service. The Veterans History Project Collection includes oral histories along with documentary materials such as original letters, diaries, photographs, and memoirs.

Veterans and interviewers contribute these materials to the Library for scholarly and educational purposes, retaining any copyright they may hold. Therefore, permission must be obtained before using the interview or other materials in exhibition or publication. Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these materials should contact the Veterans History Project for assistance.

As a publicly supported institution, the Library generally does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot give or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute material in its collections. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item from the Library’s collections and for securing any necessary permissions rests with persons desiring to use the item.

Please contact us with questions.

Obtaining Copies of VHP Materials

In order for VHP materials to be duplicated, we must receive written permission from the interviewee for you to obtain a copy of the recording unless the proposed use is limited to personal use, research, or other uses permissible by copyright law. If the interviewee is deceased, their next-of-kin may grant written permission.

Please contact VHP for assistance if you need to contact a veteran for permission to use their materials in exhibition or publication, or if you have received permission from the veteran and need access to high-resolution copies of VHP collection materials.

Citing VHP Materials

Please use the following formats when citing Veterans History Project materials (substituting the appropriate name and collection ID number).

Materials as a whole:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Manuscript material:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Memoirs (MS02), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Transcript (MS04), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Correspondence (MS01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Recording:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Audio recording (SR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Video recording (MV01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Photograph:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Photographs (PH01), photographer unknown, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Photographs (PH03-PH14), Ralph Williams photographer, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Computer file:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Computer file (CF01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Artifact:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), Artifact (AR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Smith, Quentin, Virginia Dodge, Timothy Sanders, Richard Lugar, U.S. Senate/Richard Lugar, and National Court Reporters Association. Quentin Smith Collection. 1942. Personal Narrative. https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.03001/.

APA citation style:

Smith, Q., Virginia Dodge, Sanders, T., Lugar, R., U.S. Senate/Richard Lugar & National Court Reporters Association. (1942) Quentin Smith Collection. [Personal Narrative] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.03001/.

MLA citation style:

Smith, Quentin, et al. Quentin Smith Collection. 1942. Personal Narrative. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.03001/>.