A vast number of war time memorabilia from some of the most historic events from World War II will be offered on sale at Bonhams’ third annual World War II auction on April 29. To commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the events of 1945, Bonhams has curated this sale to focus on battlefield material. Featured in this sale is an extraordinary archive belonging to Robert Lewis, co-pilot of the Enola Gay, the B-29 bomber that dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
It was the first aircraft to drop an atomic bomb. His collection includes his personal manuscript flying logs, official flying logs, plans and notes for the mission, and many of his personal photographs.
Leading this collection are two pilot log books filled in by Lewis that is estimated at $150,000 – 200,000 that recorded every day that he flew. The first log book comprises 56 pages that starts on June 3, 1942, and continues up to October 10, 1943, with Lewis’ note at the end, “This book covers time from primary flying up to and including start of B-29 test work at Eglin Field. Proving grounds.” The second log book is 55 pages and starts on August 10, 1943 and finishes on Jan 9, 1946.
Other notable lots are: a 48-Star national flag flown both in Salerno and on D-day from USS LST-2 “Dirty Duece,” Salerno, September 9 1943 and D-day June 6 1944 (estimated at $30,000 – 50,000); a copy of the Japanese Instrument of Surrender, Tokyo Bay, Japan 2 September 1945 (est. 20,000 – 30,000); an important 48 star American flag carried by Captain George B. Eldridge, 3rd battalion, at D-day (est. $20,000 – 30,000); a Japanese Type 94 Shin-Gunto Officer’s Sword Recovered from Iwo Jima, 26 March, 1945 captured March 26 1945 (estimated at $15,000 – 20,000); and a Japanese “general situation Map” of Iwo Jima, captured in the caves at Cushman’s Pocket, February 11-15, 1945 (estimated at $15,000 – 20,000).