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You Really Need to See This WWI Aviation Portrait/Photo


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I was at an estate sale today and found this photo and oil painting. I originally saw the oil painting of a WWI aviation cadet (George Gordon Kellar) who was killed during a training accident at Kelly Aviation Field in San Antonio, Texas on July 29, 1918. They wanted $700 for the oil painted portrait, which clearly I could not afford. But, they also had a stack of photos for sale, and in thumbing through them, I found the original 7x10” photo from which the portrait was painted, which I bought. On the back of the photo, there was an inscription from George Kellar’s mother, describing how he died in the flight accident. I have never run across a photo like this. I didn’t see the mother’s inscription on the back of the photo until I got home this afternoon and I was fairly choked up after reading it. Tomorrow, if the oil painted portrait is still there, I may go back and see if there is any way they can negotiate on the price, because it would be a real shame if the photo and portrait became separated. Comments?

 

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Buy the painting if you can....as your correct on having the whole story between the two items. Imho I think the photo is very well done more so then the painting

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I called the estate sale company a few minutes ago, and they have left the home for the day. They open at 10 a.m. tomorrow and the company rep said she will meet me at 9 to try and work out a reasonable price. I told her that it would be a shame if the photo got separated from the painting, then she added that they also have the original obituary describing the accident. I told the rep that I cannot pay $700 for the painting, not even close, but in order to not let those items get separated I could pay a reasonable amount (which is whatever I can negotiate with my wife...and she is not thrilled...). Here is my feeling, and yaw’ll tell me what you think. The original photo with the mother’s hand written inscription, is the most significant part of the group. The painting is “worth” whatever someone is willing to pay...so, anyone want to throw out a value? I am truly looking for some advice.

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Are you sure it’s an oil?

 

And how big is it?

Yes, it’s oil, probably 16x24”. Actually, I don’t know that for sure. In fact, looking back at my own photo, I don’t think it is oil. Maybe a colorized photo of some sort. For whatever it’s worth, the airman was a distant relative of the estate owner, a retired federal judge.

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Keeping it real and just my two cents. Nice photo but nothing at all special about it that I can see. This name/history is nice but being that the man did not fight overseas that is really going to drop the interest level. I may pay $100 for the painting, at the most.

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Keeping it real and just my two cents. Nice photo but nothing at all special about it that I can see. This name/history is nice but being that the man did not fight overseas that is really going to drop the interest level. I may pay $100 for the painting, at the most.

...if that


The bended knee is not a tradition of our Corps. (General A. A. Vandegrift, USMC, 5 May 1946)

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If you had to have just one, the original portrait is better than the painting, IMHO. And I doubt they'll go from $700 to $100, I'd chalk it off and wait until the end of the sale, when it's inevitably still around, prices tend to drop at the end

-Brig
GySgt/USMC/0369
RSU-Quantico


"FOR OUR TOMORROWS, THEY GAVE THEIR TODAYS"
RIP
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He died in service to the country, and it's an attractive picture. As Eric said there would be great interest if he served overseas and was credited with victories. I think the guys are low; since WW1 aviation will always be sought after. I'd guess $200 would be OK. If it's for resale then stick with the $100.

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