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Raymond W. Stanley, 1918

Contributed by Stanley Museum

Raymond W. Stanley (1894-1985) enlisted in the U.S. Naval Reserve on May 9, 1917, taking advantage of Harvard College's policy of allowing seniors to enlist in active duty prior to fulfilling graduation requirements.

He was assigned to the Naval Reserve's First Naval District at Bath on May 17, 1917, and was eventually assigned to his own motor launch, the U.S.S. Empress, which he had offered to the Navy for use during WWI as a sectional patrol craft, leased at $1 per month.

He served a tour of duty in Boothbay Harbor, patrolling the coastline, ferrying naval personnel from ship to shore, and investigating alleged sightings of enemy activity.

As the only son of F.E. Stanley of Kingfield, a wealthy auto manufacturer, and in possession of his own boat, Raymond Stanley was in the privileged position of being able to serve his country in a non-combat, state-side role.

Not wanting to be seen as "slacking" active duty, however, Stanley took the earliest opportunity to enlist in the new Naval Aviation Corps to train as a combat pilot for European service, and is shown here in his Naval Aviator's uniform, circa May 1918. He was soon after discharged from the Naval Aviation Corps on May 28, 1918, after his pre-flight medical examination found that he was color blind.

Unable to fly, Raymond Stanley re-enlisted June 5, 1918, in the U.S. Army Signal Corps, using his draftsman's skills to illustrate WWI aviation flight manuals for other pilots. He was discharged from the Army Signal Corps with the rank of corporal on January 21, 1919, at the end of the war.

Other Information


  • Title: Raymond W. Stanley, 1918
  • Creator: Avery Postal Studios
  • Creation Date: 1918
  • Subject Date: 1918
  • Town: Boston
  • County: Suffolk
  • State: MA
  • Media: Black & White Photograph
  • Dimensions (cm): 13.9 x 8.7
  • Local Code: PC-1 #4
  • Collection: Raymond W. Stanley Collection
  • Object Type: Image

For more information about this item, contact:

Stanley Museum
street: 40 School Street, mailing: PO BOX 77, Kingfield, ME 04947
(207) 265-2729
http://www.stanleymuseum.org

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