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The Original 24 Military Aviators - Photographs


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#51 Paul S

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Posted 02 January 2009 - 07:36 AM

A nice lady in NC went out and took a picture of Eric Ellington's grave marker and sent it to me. Mr. Ellington, 24, was a high potential young man who was killed in one of the tragic early airplane crashes. He and Lt. Kelly, another obscure early Military Aviator, were killed in the same crash into San Diego Bay.

Anyway, here is tangible evidence that Eric Ellington did live--he was brought home to his small hometown of Clayton, NC (SE of Raleigh) and laid to rest with his parents. Many of his early aviator peers are in Arlington.

Does anyone have, or know of a better picture of him than the one or two that can be easily found online?

Paul S

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  • Ellington.jpg


#52 IMPERIAL QUEST

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Posted 02 January 2009 - 08:38 AM

A nice lady in NC went out and took a picture of Eric Ellington's grave marker and sent it to me. Mr. Ellington, 24, was a high potential young man who was killed in one of the tragic early airplane crashes. He and Lt. Kelly, another obscure early Military Aviator, were killed in the same crash into San Diego Bay.

Anyway, here is tangible evidence that Eric Ellington did live--he was brought home to his small hometown of Clayton, NC (SE of Raleigh) and laid to rest with his parents. Many of his early aviator peers are in Arlington.

Does anyone have, or know of a better picture of him than the one or two that can be easily found online?

Paul S


Paul,

Thanks for posting this. I live about 15 minutes from Ellington Field, and have always wondered what its namesake looked like.

#53 John Cooper

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Posted 03 January 2009 - 07:15 PM

Paul,

I think it is great someone assited you in obtaining this photo and the proof it represents.

John

#54 CliffP

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Posted 03 January 2009 - 10:29 PM

Does anyone have, or know of a better picture of him than the one or two that can be easily found online?


Paul,

This is a much clearer picture of Lt. Ellington than the one you currently have.

Cheers, ;)
Cliff

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#55 CliffP

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 04:51 PM

Picture of (then) Col. Thomas Dewitt Milling taken in 1942 wearing his 1913 issue MA badge.

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#56 Paul S

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 07:01 PM

What a beautiful portrait of Col. Milling, Cliff. I wouldn't have recognized him from his earlier pictures.

I found an interesting trove of historic Life magazine pictures that Google has scanned and put into one of their databases. You can access it by typing into the Google search window, what you are looking for, then the word "source:life".

< Hap Arnold source:life > yielded this great photo of General Arnold in 1947, I think. He always looked fairly relaxed, but this picture to my eye shows a much relieved man after the war was over. There is probably a ton of other WWII vintage photos like this one in the database.

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Edited by Paul S, 04 January 2009 - 07:06 PM.


#57 CliffP

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Posted 04 January 2009 - 10:39 PM

Paul, do you have these pictures taken in 1911?

Picture #1 is Lt. Paul M. Beck
Picture #2 is Lt. George E. M. Kelly
Picture #3 from left to right is John C. Walker, Jr. (Army), Lt. Paul M. Beck (Army), Glenn H. Curtiss, Lt. Theodore G. Ellyson (USN), Lt. George E. M. Kelly (Army)

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  • 1._Lt._Paul_M._Beck.jpg
  • 2._Lt._George_E._M._Kelly.jpg
  • 3._1911_Lt._John_C._Walker__Jr.__Lt._Paul_M._Beck__Glenn_Curtiss__Lt.Theodore_G._Ellyson__Lt._George_E.M._Kelly.jpg

Edited by CliffP, 04 January 2009 - 10:41 PM.


#58 Paul S

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:00 AM

Paul, do you have these pictures taken in 1911?


Cliff,
Some more great pictures...I recognize the group picture as being from the same session as the one I posted in page 1, #13 of this thread; but this one is much, much clearer and better exposed. Pictures like this one play to a theme I've been developing the past few years, since I've been flirting with becoming an older man with time to reflect on how I and others fit into the grand scheme of things.

This picture, to my eye shows a strength, determination, and depth of character in the expressions of the young men who are focused on something they consider important while mindful that they are lucky to have the opportunity, even if a dangerous one. I've seen the same kind of expressions in group pictures taken of Doolittle's crews prior to the Tokyo mission; and there is a great one taken of a recent crew of Blue Angels--see below.

Pictures like these give me some hope that beneath the veneer of what I call "Looney Tunes" going on in today's public domain where a Navy Captain and Astronaut named Lisa puts on a diaper, drives 900+ miles overnight to confront a romantic rival, not to mention the current crop of "leaders" approach to leadership in economic and political matters, and militant opposition from a sect that proposes a return to 7th century notions of society, that there still exists a core of young men (& women) who still possess strength, determination,and depth of character. I wish they got more publicity.

Excuse me folks, that one just blew out. ;)

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#59 Paul S

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:22 AM

With regard to the individual pictures of plane (powered kite or an antique "Breezy") and pilot, I had thought of including a section that briefly illustrated the few principal types of craft these early aviators flew at the Wright and Curtiss schools as long as I could find a few high quality images of them. These 2 pictures are terrific for that purpose, at least with regard to the Curtiss school.

A further theme I'm thinking about is to include a section about the young aviators that didn't make it--those who would have qualified, if not for their aircraft accidents or failure for other reasons not to qualify for the badge. There might be enough information available about them to fill such a chapter without complicating the overall work too much. In the Beck-Curtiss group picture, I don't know what happened to Walker, Ellyson, and Kelly that they didn't qualify for the badge, and as you know there are other group pictures that pose similar questions.

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#60 njaviators

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 04:56 PM

Herbert A. Dargue - New Jersey boy from Allendale - photo from Who's Who in American Aeronautics for 1925. Dargue's younger brother Daniel was also a pilot, though I have yet (30+ years later) to find anything significant about his service.

I'd be very interested in any other shots of Dargue. He's one of the 750 aviators from my home state and this is the only decent photo I have. I saw another recently - less clear than this one - that shows him with the 1913 wings on his uniform as well. I known he was inducted in the National Aviation Hall of Fame, but have not contacted them as yet.

-Mike

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Edited by njaviators, 05 January 2009 - 04:57 PM.


#61 Paul S

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Posted 08 January 2009 - 10:20 AM

I was wondering if Milling and Arnold were close friends...this picture answers the question. That's Lt. Milling standing just behind, and left of Arnold as his best man in this 1913 wedding photograph.

Paul S

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#62 teufelhunde.ret

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Posted 08 January 2009 - 10:42 AM

Folks, must say I have really enjoyed viewing this thread as it has developed - Thx to all for these great photograph's. s/f Darrell

#63 Paul S

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Posted 09 January 2009 - 06:45 AM

Here is the best picture I have been able to find of Lewis Goodier...a 1914 picture in front of a flying boat in San Diego, also shows J.C. Morrow.

Goodier was an interesting character...he didn't trust the Wright "machines" and refused to fly them even when ordered, which some said cost him his Army career. From his hospital bed he asked his father, a distinguished Army lawyer, to look into the matter of the Chief of the San Diego school, Capt. Cowan, drawing flight pay when he was not flying. Lt. Goodier had been severely injured in a plane crash.

The Army's response was that Cowan was too busy to be flying and the Army turned on Goodier's father, bringing him to a Courts Martial for instigating a rebellion at North Island. The trial resulted in a slap on the hand for the father, but also brought in to view the facts of Army mismanagement of the Flying Section which was contributing significantly to the heavy death toll of early aviators. Commands changed after the trial and the Goodiers, father and son, essentially fell on the sword to bring changes about which served to help move the progress of powered flight along. Billy Mitchell took up the charge after this and then things really heated up.

Does anyone have a good picture of Goodier...should be some around since he lived a long life and contributed a lot of material to the Air Force archives, but few pictures of himself.

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Edited by Paul S, 09 January 2009 - 07:04 AM.


#64 CliffP

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Posted 10 January 2009 - 03:45 AM

Herbert A. Dargue - New Jersey boy from Allendale.

I'd be very interested in any other shots of Dargue. He's one of the 750 aviators from my home state

-Mike


Maj General Herbert A. Dargue
Born in Brooklyn, NY 17 November 1886
KIA near Bishop, CA 12 December 1941

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#65 CliffP

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 07:56 AM

Another old picture of Lewis E. Goodier, Jr. and a
nice group photo of some other Military Aviators.

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  • Group_photo.jpg


#66 Paul S

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 06:39 PM

Does anyone recognize the gent on the right with Orville Wright?

The picture is from Lewis Goodier's collection of photographs posted to the Air Force History site and is dated Sept. 5, 1908, so it pre-dates Goodier's flying days by several years..but since this is a very tall man as it appears Goodier was, I wondered if it might be Goodier even so.

About 2-weeks after this picture was taken, Wright and Selfridge crashed, Selfridge was killed, thus becoming the first military aviator to be killed in an airplane. Orville Wright was seriously injured in the crash.

Paul S

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Edited by Paul S, 12 January 2009 - 06:47 PM.


#67 CliffP

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 07:58 PM

Does anyone recognize the gent on the right with Orville Wright?


That is French aviator Henri Farman.

#68 Paul S

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 07:44 AM

That is French aviator Henri Farman.


Thanks, Cliff. I've got the Hennessy book on the way...maybe that will help with some of these identifications.

There is a great picture in Goodier's collection of him making his final approach (in #2, I think), problem is...you can't make him out in the photo...have to take the caption's word for it.

Paul S

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#69 Paul S

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 06:34 PM

This is a picture of the San Diego class of 1913. Need some help identifying some of the men shown...see those circled. This must have been the last class to qualify pilots for the 1913 MA badge.

Got the Hennessy book today...has the picture, but not identified.

Paul S :huh:

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  • Copy_of_1913_San_Diego_School.jpg


#70 Paul S

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 05:30 AM

Well, since it appears that I've stumped the panel, let me offer my opinions for comment and criticism....

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#71 Paul S

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 10:55 AM

Not Coleman...this gent is the infamous Capt. Arthur S. Cowan.

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#72 CliffP

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 02:42 PM

Paul,

The three in question are left to right:

Fred Seydel
John P. Edgerly
Arthur S. Cowan

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#73 CliffP

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 03:13 PM

Robert H. Willis, Jr. in the seat of Signal Corps airplane #8.

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#74 Paul S

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 05:45 PM

Thanks again Cliff for the Willis picture and the idents of the group picture...I have all of them identified now.

This is an interesting picture, judging from who is there and who is not, was taken about December 1913. There are 7 men pictured who earned the Military Aviator badge. Three of the men got into a real contest that ended up with the Goodier Court Martial. For anyone interested in learning more, there is plenty of information available online that will surface on a Google search.

Here is an even better picture of Lewis Goodier.

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#75 none

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 06:14 PM

I have had the distinct pleasure of holding in my hand three 1913 original wings. Hap Arnolds, Capt Paul Becks and the third belonged to 1Lt. Hollis LeRoy Muller.

A Las Vegas, NV collector has the Paul Beck wing. Hap Arnolds wing was at the Air Force Museum for a while on load from the family. I guess the family now has it. I made a mold of Hap’s wing and my reproduction is directly made from his wing. Lt. Muller’s wing is also at the Air Force Museum currently in storage.

But if I remember correctly 26 or 27 of the wings were awarded. Somewhere I have a list form my old Air Force Days. I will have to do a lot of digging to find the list maybe someone else has it?

Edited by cwnorma, 19 January 2009 - 11:41 AM.
removed name of non-forum member



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