WWI Portrait Photo – WWI Pilot Walter V. Monger of Benson, Vermont


World War One Vermonter photos are far and few between, so I always jump on the opportunity to add one to my growing collection.  Today’s portrait photo recently arrived in the mail from a fellow collector who discovered it at an estate sale on the West Coast.  This crisp and clear 8×10 portrait was sadly damaged during shipping but still retains it’s incredible details depicting the bullion wings and cap insignia.

Walter Monger WWI Portrait

Walter Monger WWI Portrait

Walter V. Monger was born on December 18th, 1892 and passed away on October 18th, 1975.  I’ve tracked down a number of documents on Ancestry.com that can be viewed below:

WWI Draft Registration Card

WWI Draft Registration Card

WWII Draft Registration

WWII Draft Registration

1919 School Photo

1919 School Photo

 

WWI 37th Division Chaplain Portrait – William P. O’Connor, American Legion National Catholic Chaplain


Identified chaplain photos have become incredibly popular in the past few years given the ramp-up effort to prepare for the 100 year anniversary of WWI.  I’ve made an effort to scoop up as many interesting chaplain photos as possible to share here on PortraitsofWar to help spread the word about the U.S. involvement in the war.  A recent eBay duel landed me with a top-notch portrait of a 37th Division (primarily Ohio based division) chaplain posed with his WWI Victory Medal and uniform.  The inscription on the bottom ends with a crude signature.  I was able to do my typical google,  ancestry.com, Library of Congress and Fold3 search to come up with a 100% positive identification.

Lt. William O'Connor

Lt. William O’Connor

William Patrick O’ Connor was born in Dayton, Ohio on October 7th, 1889 to John and Elizabeth (Kenney) O’Connor.  He attended the University of Dayton for his B.A. and followed up with seminary school at Mt. St. Mary’s Seminary in Cincinnati.  He was ordained in 1913 and served as Curate at Urbana, Ohio, 1913-117; later paston, Church of the Assumption in Cincinnati(Source).    William O’Connor has the distinction of being the first Ohio priest to enter the army following the declaration of war in 1917.Father  O’Connor served as chaplain with Battery F, 136th Field Artillery as part of the 37th “Buckeye” Division during WWI.  At the time of the portrait, he was the chaplain of the 107th Cavalry of the Ohio National Guard.    I was lucky enough to track down a 1918 article with a direct quotation from Rev. O’Connor:

“…………… I take this occasion to thank the Knights of Columbus of Cincinnati for their exceeding kindness and consideration to the Chaplain, and to thank all the people of Ohio for their kindness to the soldier boys. 

With best wishes, in J.M.J. I am, sincerely yours,

William P. O’Connor,

First Lt. 136th Field Artillery Chaplain”

http://arc.stparchive.com/Archive/ARC/ARC02161918p08.php

Father O’Connor was elected National Chaplain of the American Legion after the third ballot and was in a tight heat with Rev. Ezra Clemmons of Iowa and Rev. Roy Tucker of Baton Rouge, LA.  For more info check out the following site: http://arc.stparchive.com/Archive/ARC/ARC11041922p05.php

Newspaper Clipping of Father O'Connor, 1922

Newspaper Clipping of Father O’Connor, 1922

 

58 Ringgold St, Dayton Ohio

58 Ringgold St, Dayton Ohio

And where he lived in Dayton, Ohio