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"It wasn’t unusual for complete strangers from other outfits to come to my barracks, foxhole or tent and ask for a drawing of themselves." (Video self-interview, 2:06)

   James Allen Scott
Image of James Allen Scott
James Scott in uniform, Plaza, San Diego, CA [7/1943]
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: Marine Corps
Unit: Headquarters and Service Company, 1st Battalion, 12th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division
Service Location: San Diego, California; Camp Pendleton, California; Camp Elliott, California; Pacific Theater; Solomon Islands; Guam (Mariana Islands); Iwo Jima; Volcano Islands
Rank: Corporal
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Corporal James A. Scott was in his third year of art school when he enlisted in the Marine Corps in November 1942. He sketched and painted throughout his training and while in the Pacific Theater; working even from his foxhole, he created vividly colored watercolors that remain vibrant nearly 75 years later. Doing a brisk business in portraiture, he gave away for free most of the likenesses he created, charging only the officers. As he notes in his self-interview, many of the Marines whom he drew sent the portraits home to their families, and in some cases, these sketches would be the last images the families would receive of their loved ones--such was the significance of art in a combat zone. Scott’s eye was also drawn to the South Pacific landscape; he drew strangler figs and coconut trees, and created a garden of jungle plants around his tent that served as a frequent backdrop for portraits.

Multimedia Recordings
»Self Interview (16 min.)
  Photos
»Photo Album  (6 photos)
 Creative Works
»View Creative Works (40 items)
 Official Documents
»Thanksgiving Day 1943 Marine Training Center Camp Elliott, California
 Other Materials
»View List (3 items)
More like this
»Art of War
 Other Materials (3 items)
Art in the Pacific War Zone Solomon Islands Art Show Catalogue Hand written transcript of interview with James A. Scott
  
 

Home » James Allen Scott
  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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