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Kilroy Was Here
poetography: inspirational pictures and words

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The words "KILROY WAS HERE" & a simple drawing of a face peeking over a fence were written on any surface US servicemen came near during World War II, usually meant to be the mark of the first American GI to arrive at that place. Kilroy's face was so ubiquitous wherever American servicemen went, especially in Europe, that rumors popped up saying Hitler himself issued orders to find Kilroy and that Stalin came face-to-face with Kilroy inside a Potsdam outhouse.

The cartoon figure of a little man looking over a wall came from British popular culture and was known as "Mr. Chad." Mr. Chad was usually drawn with the words, "Wot? No _____?" with the blank filled in with an item in short supply, such as "Wot? No Petrol?" or "Wot? No Bread?" (Mr. Chad appeared on the side of a Horsa glider used in Operation Market Garden by the British 1st Airborne Division with the tag, "Wot, No Engines?"). Australian popular culture had a similar Mr. Foo who may trace to World War I.

Sources attribute Mr. Chad to George Chatterton, a British cartoonist, in about 1938.

Once "KILROY WAS HERE" & the image of Mr. Chad were joined together, they made their way to every corner of the American presence, especially in newly captured areas or landings. Navy UDT divers landing on Japanese held islands in advance of Allied landings even reported finding "KILROY WAS HERE" on Japanese pillboxes. Kilroy was so much a part of the American war experience that in 2004 he even found his place on the US National World War II Memorial in Washington, DC.

Information obtained from: World War II Data Base - ww2db.com


This doodle duck was advertising tour rides around Boston in a W W2 "military "duck" transport vechicle. It's their version of Leroy.

peapod_ has particularly liked this photo

Shuttering Yukon
Shuttering Yukon
ha, I never knew that! and I have drawn this pic like a billion times! adding ears, hair and whatnot! well damn I learned something today!
4 years ago.
Clickity Click has replied to Shuttering Yukon
So glad you now know how this little guy came about!!!
4 years ago.
I love this little duck, looks so friendly !
4 years ago.
Clickity Click has replied to Nylonbleu
:) thank you so much Isa, glad you like this. :) x
4 years ago.