Presented in an original WWII Naval aviation recruitment poster by McClelland Barclay. The small tabletop poster was issued to help recruit cadets for naval aviation. The poster depicts an officer on the deck of a carrier deck, holding binoculars in one hand and confidently signaling orders with his other hand. Behind him, a naval aviator climbs into the cockpit of an airplane. The poster text reads “Cadets for Naval Aviation take that something extra...have you got it?” and urges viewers to “Apply [to the] nearest U.S. Navy Recruiting Station.”
Naval Aviation was an integral part of WWII fighting tactics. U.S. Naval Aviation began in the early 1900s, but did not become a decisive element until the Second World War. Not just for pilots, the division needed personnel to handle complicated storage, launching, and landing processes of aircraft carriers. This poster advertises a need for men to assist with the various aspects of those processes.
McClelland Barclay was already a successful painter, illustrator, sculptor, and jewelry maker before he became a lieutenant in the Naval Reserve in 1938. Throughout his accomplished career, he not only designed recruitment posters but also illustrated magazine covers such as Cosmopolitan and Saturday Evening Post. On July 18, 1943, less than a year after this sign was published, Barclay perished after a Japanese Submarine torpedoed the naval ship he was aboard. Posthumously, in 1944, Barclay was awarded the Art Directors Club Medal, "in recognition of his long and distinguished record in editorial illustration and advertising art and in honor of his devotion and meritorious service to his country as a commissioned officer of the United States Navy."
Color lithograph, printed on cardboard. Colors are very vibrant. White margins. Paper is healthy, with only minor creases and light discoloration in margins from past handling and storage. Sold unframed, as-is. Unframed Dimensions: 20"H x 14" W (sheet size).