Group photos from Great Britain

OxfordGranthamTraining squadronsAyr


Men of the Oxford detachments
Large group photo of about 180 men in uniform ranged in about 10 rows before an American flag and ivy-covered walls.
This photo of Oxford detachment men, still wearing American campaign hats but with the white bands the British used to mark cadets is presumably a mix of men from the first and second Oxford detachments; by my count, there are 187 cadets in the photo (plus four staff officers), so presumably neither detachment is represented in its entirety. Many men from the second Oxford detachment, including Vaughn, Herbert, Springs, Carpenter, Payden, and Fleet, are recognizable. This copy of the photo was among the possessions of Lloyd Ludwig and handed down in his family; my thanks to his great-nephew, Lloyd Ludwig, Jr., and to Michael O’Neal. My thanks to David Grider for finding the location of the photo: it was taken in the Fellows’ Garden (now the Provost’s Garden) of Queen’s College, against the wall of the library.  Murton Llewellyn Campbell provides a probable date for the photo. He wrote in his diary on October 15, 1917, that “The whole American detachment had a picture taken at the Queens this afternoon.” A higher resolution image can be seen here.
British and American cadets at Christ Church College, Oxford, October 1917
Most of the ninety second Oxford detachment cadets who were housed at Christ Church College, along with British cadets. The Americans are wearing campaign hats, while the British cadets have R.F.C. caps with white bands. Photo reproduced by courtesy of the Springs Close Family Archives, Fort Mill, S.C. This same photo, cropped, was one of the photos tipped into the 1926 special edition of War Birds.  Click here for larger image
Cadets, Exeter College, Oxford.
Photo of a long line of uniformed men standing in front of the towering, ivy covered walls of gothic buildings; they are in the northeast corner of the front quadrangle of Exeter College, Oxford.
Cadets still wearing their campaign hats, in the northeast corner of the front quadrangle at Exeter College, Oxford. This publicity photo credited to the General Press Organization was among Hooper’s possessions.
Cadets outside in shiny boots, clutching books, at Oxford.
Members of the second Oxford detachment in what was apparently a publicity photo taken at Oxford; a copy was among Hooper’s possessions. The men are now wearing R.F.C. caps; the white bands mark them as cadets. Springs is on the far right, looking away from the camera. Bevin is towards the left, standing in front of the other men and looking into the camera. I am grateful to Mike O’Neal for the identifications.
Cadets of the second Oxford detachment standing in front of a hangar.
In a letter dated October 31, 1917, Parr Hooper wrote “Today while at classes our squad was used to take some official pictures for the air board. So if you see any pictures in the N.Y. Times of American cadets in English flying schools, ‘swinging the prop’ in the engine running shed, (crank the engine over by twirling the propeller around) standing in front of a hangar or sitting in a lecture with a skeleton aeroplane longside, look them over to find my mug sticking about.”  Hooper appears at the far right of this photo, but he and Springs, next to him, were cropped out when the photo was published in the rotogravure picture section of the December 2, 1917, New York Times. The NYT photo was clipped and kept with other material related to Perkins in the Virginia War Museum; the rotogravure picture section is preserved at the Library of Congress. The above copy of the photo was kept by Neely; I am grateful to Mike O’Neal for a scan of it. The preceding photo and the next two photos on this page, as well as this one, also kept by Neely, where Springs stands second from the left, were probably all taken the same day.
Cadets of the second Oxford detachment in a chilly Oxford classroom.
Photo of men in heavy coats, mostly seated at a table, apparently listening and taking notes from an instructor standing in front of them.
Men of the second Oxford detachment in a chilly classroom.  Numbering the men from left to right, 1 and 2 are Bostick and Springs. Barksdale, looking up at the instructor is 6.  7 is Neely (in front of curtain), and 8 is probably Knox (looking down).  12, partially visible, may be Hooper.  14, to the left of the instructor, is Stillman. To the left of Stillman is Matthiessen. The third man from the right of the picture is probably Landon.  I am grateful to Mike O’Neal for some of the identifications.  He has a copy of the photo, and there is also a copy among the Barksdale documents at the Barksdale Global Power Museum.
Bird’s eye map reading at Oxford.
Photo of fifteen men in overcoats gathered around a table with what appears to be a large map on it.
This photo was used to illustrate The History of the Air Service in Great Britain (Gorrell B.2), where this caption is provided: “Air Pilots in the Making: Photo shows American flying cadets learning ‘Bird’s eye map-reading’ in British school.” The balding, mustached cadet in the center is Stillman; it appears to be Hooper looking over his shoulder. Barksdale stands third from right.
Recreation at Oxford.
Photo of three men in uniform standing next to bicycles on a leafy street.
This photo was probably taken early in the cadets’ time at Oxford, before they were required to upgrade their uniforms and wear Sam Browne belts. Bulkley is on the left, and Chalaire on the right. The man in the middle is perhaps Carlton. I am grateful to Mike O’Neal for a copy of this photo.
Deetjen and Barksdale at Oxford
From Deetjen’s photo album: “Me & Barksdale.” (Wisconsin Historical Society WHS #145750.)
Three cadets at Oxford.
From Deetjen’s photo album: “Spear, Mac & PMS”—George Dana Spear, Leo McCarthy, and Perley Melbourne Stoughton with, presumably, Deetjen’s shadow. (Wisconsin Historical Society, WHS #145749.)
Four cadets at Oxford.
Four hatless men in military tunics standing before ivy-covered walls.
Bulkley, Chalaire, Frost, and Carlton at Oxford, probably early in October, before uniforms were upgraded and Sam Browne belts required.  The location may be Peckwater Quadrangle, where cadets assigned to Christ Church College would have had their rooms.  I am grateful to Mike O’Neal for permission to use his copy of this photo. Another copy, belonging to Dixon, was reproduced on p. 82 of Reed and Roland’s Camel Drivers.
Four more cadets at Oxford
Four men in uniform at Oxford.
The men are, left to right, Marvin Kent Curtis, Uel Thomas McCurry, Hugh Douglas Stier, and Elwood D. Stanbery, against the background of Peckwater Quadrangle, the building where the cadets roomed at Christ Church College.  All but Curtis are wearing the new (to them) R.F.C. caps with the white bands marking them as cadets, but they don’t yet sport Sam Browne belts.  The photo is reproduced from a copy on p. 27 of Payden, J.R.: Joseph R. Payden, 1915–1925, with the kind permission of Joan Payden.
McCurry, Brown, and Stier at Oxford
Photo of Uel Thomas McCurry, Charles Edward Brown, and Hugh Douglas Stier that Grider pasted into his diary. Courtesy of the South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, S.C.


Seven cadets at Grantham
Ervin David Shaw stands third from the left in this photo, which was probably handed down in his family. The second man from the left is probably Earl William Sweeney. The man third from the right may be Albert Sidney Woolfolk. Photo courtesy of The Sumter Item.
Castle, Hamilton, and Griffiths at Grantham
Harvard DeHart Castle, Lloyd Andrews Hamilton, and Edward Addison Griffiths at Grantham, from Milnor’s photo album. The original caption to the photo reads “Castle Ham Griffiths,” but a later hand has added “R.J.” to the last name on the erroneous assumption that the man on the right is Robert Jenkins Griffith. Photo courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
Contemplating a Vickers machine gun at Grantham
On the left are Thomas M. Nial and Robert Thomas Palmer; on the right Reuben Lee Paskill (arms folded) and Hugh Douglas Stier. The other men are thus far not identified. The photo is from Joseph Kirkbride Milnor’s album, courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
Nial, Stier, and Paskill with Vickers machine gun at Grantham
Nial, Stier, unidentified officer, and Paskill with a Vickers machine gun at Grantham. The photo is from Joseph Kirkbride Milnor’s album, courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
“My Squad – Grantham”
Photo (cropped) from page 40 of Milnor’s photo album. Standing in back are Weaver, Blackburn, Irwin, Suiter, and Payson. Kneeling in front are Desson, Halley, and Milnor.
Cadets setting out from Grantham for Nottingham
Cadets setting out from Grantham for Nottingham, one of the photos that John McGavock Grider pasted into his second diary notebook. He identifies the men, left to right, as himself, George Orrin Middleditch, John Warren Leach, Laurence Kingsley Callahan, Chester Arthur Pudrith, Walter Ferguson Halley, Harry Adam Schlotzhauer, unidentified, and Fred Trufant Shoemaker. The photo is not dated, but must have been taken before November 19, 1918, when Grider and Callahan were posted to Thetford, and Middleditch, Pudrith, and Shoemaker to Waddington. Courtesy of the South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina, Columbia, S.C.
Football at Grantham
An informal shot of fifteen men ready to play football.
The winning team, the Unfits, at the Thanksgiving Day football game at Grantham. Standing, left to right: Stanbery, Maloney, Chapin, Hardin (captain), Fleet, Porter (identification tentative), and Wilson. Crouching, left to right: Goad, Read, Ludwig, Brader, Devery, Jensen, and (from the opposing team) Payson and Gaipa. Most of the identifications come from a copy of the photo kept by Clayton Knight and reproduced by Peter Kilduff on p. 199 of “Clayton Knight—Artist and Airman.”  Ludwig noted the names of his team members in his diary; apparently missing from the photo is Kerk. Payden also kept a copy of the photo, and the above is scanned from p. 37 of Payden, J.R.: Joseph R. Payden, 1915–1925, with the kind permission of Joan Payden. See here for a larger version.
Football at Grantham: Ready for the snap.
A football team ready to play.
In back, left to right:  Chapin, Stanbery (quarterback), Hardin (captain and halfback), Maloney. In front: Goad, Read, Ludwig, Brader (center), Devery, Jensen, and unidentfied (possibly Kerk, although it looks more like Payson from the opposing team). Team members Fleet and Maloney were, according to Ludwig, substitutes, and don’t appear here. This photo was among Stanbery’s papers, and is reproduced here with the kind permission of his great niece, Barb Pepper.
Thanksgiving banquet at Grantham 1917
From p. 38 of Payden, J.R.: Joseph R. Payden, 1915-1925, courtesy of Joan Payden. Leyson stares over his shoulder into the camera from the middle right. Across the table from him and to the right is McCook (with two table napkins standing in front of him). Carpenter is third from right in the row of men standing under flags at the back. I believe Nial is on the far side of the first table, ninth from the right, next to the man whose face is obscured by leaves. Help with further identifications would be welcome. A larger version can be seen here.

Training Squadrons

Cadets at Tadcaster
“The Big Five at Tad”: Lloyd Andrews Hamilton, Henry Bradley Frost, Joseph Ralph Sandford, Hugh Douglas Stier, and Joseph Kirkbride Milnor at No. 14 Training Squadron near Tadcaster in November or December of 1917. From Milnor’s photo album, courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
Cadets sent to No. 33 H.D. Squadron at Gainsborough and Scampton in December 1918
Seven of the eight men posted to No. 33 Home Defense Squadron on December 3, 1917. Left to right:  Albert Elston Weaver, George Dana Spear, Anker Christian Jensen, Dana Edmund Coates, Gilbert Allan Woods, Forrest Thomas McCook, and William Thomas Clements. The eighth cadet, Arthur Paul Supplee, may have taken the picture, which is preserved in Clements’s photo album.
Cadets with time on their hands at Scampton
Cadets at Scampton, left to right: Anker Christian Jensen (?), Thomas Forrest McCook, Albert Elston Weaver, Coates. From a photo handed down in Coates’s family, courtesy of Rob Thompson.
Officers and cadets at Melton Mowbray
A photo of seven men, two of whom, by the wings on their chests, are officers and pilots; identifications are written in ink below the photo.
This photo of men assigned to No. 38 Squadron at Melton Mowbray, probably taken in early 1918, was among Payden’s possessions. The men are, left to right:  Joseph Raymond Payden, Evans (otherwise unidentified), Albert Frank Everett, Harrison (otherwise unidentified), Arthur Ashhurst, Eric Frank Haselden, and Robert Brewster Porter.  Ashhurst and Haselden were British officers who had been at 38 since the summer of 1917; Payden, Everett, and Porter of the second Oxford detachment were still cadets.  Reproduced from p. 52 of Payden, J.R.: Joseph R. Payden, 1915–1925, with the kind permission of Joan Payden.
Stier and Desson at South Carlton
Stier and Desson, from Milnor’s photo album. Courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
Hugh Douglas Stier and Leonard Joseph Desson with an Avro in the background. From Milnor’s photo album. Courtesy of Jay Milnor, with thanks to Mike O’Neal for the reproduction.
Roth, Middleditch, and Carlton
A photo of three men in flying clothes in a field.
John Arnold “Jerry” Roth, George Orrin Middleditch, and Donald Elsworth Carlton in a photo presumably taken by Joseph Raymond Payden at Waddington in late January or the first part of February 1918.  Roth was in the first Oxford detachment, Middleditch and Carlton in the second with Payden.  The photo is reproduced from a copy on p. 48 of Payden, J.R.: Joseph R. Payden, 1915–1925, with the kind permission of Joan Payden.
Fry, Curtis, Brown, & Anderson, Avro at London Colney
Hooper took this photo, unfortunately poorly focussed, of Fry, Curtis, Brown, and Anderson in front of an Avro at London Colney on January 3, 1918.
Brown, Paskill, and B.E.2c 9972 at London Colney
Charles Edward “Ted” Brown and Reuben Lee Paskill with B.E.2c 9972 at London Colney, January 13, 1918, in a photo take by Parr Hooper.
Fry, Curtis, and seven-year-old Tristram Rainey at Radlett
A photo of two men in uniform, but without pilots' wings, outdoors, apparently in the backyard of a house, standing in front of a boy, about seven years old.
Clarence Horne Fry (on the left), Marvin Kent Curtis, and seven-year-old Tristram Rainey. This photo was apparently taken by Mrs. Rainey at her home in Radlett, not far from London Colney, where Fry and Curtis were stationed.  Courtesy of the Tennessee State Library and Archives.  For detail, see here.


Court martial at Ayr, March 1918
A photo of five men in uniform standing, in front of a sixth man, apparently seated.
In this photo taken at Ayr in early May 1918, the men standing (l to r) are Raymond Watts, Thomas John Herbert, Paul Stuart Winslow (of the first Oxford detachment), Francis Kinloch Read, and (probably) William Percy Norfolk. The man in front is (probably) Dean Ernest Ryman. Both Winslow and Read kept copies of the photo; Read provided identifications on the back of his. Norfolk was at Ayr supervising the enlisted men of the 213th Aero Squadron; Ryman, a lawyer in civilian life, was an officer in the infantry; I have not discovered the reason for his presence at Ayr. Other than Read’s remark that “We are going to have about four men to try” (letter of May 2, 1918), I have no further information about the court martial. I am grateful to Wayne Braby for the negative from which this (cropped) reproduction has been made; the image has also been reproduced in “Attached to 56 Squadron.” (Caption revised October 4, 2022.)
Herbert and Paskill at Ayr
Tommy Herbert and Reuben Paskill at Ayr, probably in April 1918. I am grateful to Byron Callan, grandson of Bogart Rogers, for this photo from Rogers’s photo album.