"'Keep 'Em Flying!' Sure I'll help!" Vintage WWII Army Air Force Recruitment Poster by Graves, 1943

Presented in an original WWII Army Air Force recruitment poster. The poster was issued by the Recruiting Publicity Bureau and published on September 15, 1943. The poster depicts a young man in a suit, with the silver Aviation Cadet wings pinned to his lapel. The man holds up a peace sign and happily says, “Sure I’ll help!” Above is a banner with the Army Air Force motto “Keep ‘Em Flying!” in blue text. 

An informative poster, the text reads, "You, too, can help… you and other air-minded young men of seventeen who want to wear silver wings and become bombardiers, navigators, or pilots… men of your age who can now find their opportunity in the Air Corps Enlisted Reserve to qualify for future training as Aviation Cadets.”   "U.S. Army Air Force" is printed in red block letters at bottom. Small text below notes, “If you are employed in an essential war industry or are engaged in agriculture do not apply. If you are interested in Naval Aviation Cadet training apply at any Naval Recruiting Station. This announcement is made with the approval of the Joint Army and Navy Personnel Board.”

At the start of WWII, the operation of the draft, plus the increased recruiting activity of the Navy and of industry, put the Air Corps in a position where it had to compete for eligible young men to enlist. The best way to insure against the loss of potential aviation cadet personnel was to enlist qualified candidates in a reserve aviation cadet grade and place them on inactive status until they could be called to active duty to fill training school quotas. Thus, the Air Corps Enlisted Reserve (ACER) was established in April 1942. 

Civilian applicants who could qualify for aviation cadet training were enlisted in the ACER. Upon enlistment, they could elect to enlist for active duty as a unassigned private in the Army Air Corps, earmarked for aviation cadet appointment and training as facilities became available, or they could enlist in the ACER and remain at their civilian job until called to active duty, at which time he would receive an appointment to aviation cadet status. If they were enrolled full time in college, they could enlist as a private in the ACER and continue at their school until graduation or withdrawal, but with the understanding that the deferment could be terminated at any time by the Secretary of War. 


Color lithographic poster. Color is very vibrant. Signed by Graves in the lithographic stone. Paper is healthy, with fold lines from past storage. Light creasing to paper margins. "P-69-RPB-9-15-43-25M" is printed at lower right, with Recruiting Publicity Bureau logo below. Sold unframed, as-is. Unframed Dimensions: 38 1/4" H x 25 1/4" W.

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