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Let George Do It: 1942

September 1942. Fort Belvoir, Virginia. "Army Sgt. George Camplair on kitchen police duty." Last seen here, 10 years ago. Photo by Jack Delano, Office of War Information. View full size.

September 1942. Fort Belvoir, Virginia. "Army Sgt. George Camplair on kitchen police duty." Last seen here, 10 years ago. Photo by Jack Delano, Office of War Information. View full size.


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Thanks to Rochester for researching George Camplair's history.

It really adds weight to an image to know a little more about the people in it.

Interesting he was born in Berlin but was ultimately in the US Army. Not that was necessarily unusual, but worthy to note.

Thanks also to Notcom for the 1946 news story on George's wedding to Mary McNutt. Probably the girl shown in the 'Sarge At Large' photo 10/20/23 (1942)

Let George do it?

Doesn't look like Bob Bailey to me. Probably very few would get that reference.

KP duty?

I was this many years old when I learned KP duty was "kitchen police" and not "kitchen patrol" duty!

More on doors

I suspect Eventerguy is correct; I've seen similar black-painted areas on doors in other military structures, like these doors at Camp Reynolds on Angel Island. Makes me wonder if this was a standard military practice for high-traffic doors, or if each army post came up with the idea on their own.

Peeling potatoes

Why bother doing it at all? I grew up in a household that peeled potatoes and carrots, but now I peel neither. I just wash them first, then move on to the rest of the prep without peeling. Even for mashed potatoes. There are nutrients and roughage in those skins – why waste time and food removing and tossing them?

[Those are onions in the photo! - Dave]


I do wonder that an NCO gets this kind of KP duty. Are there no privates?

Who wore the apron in this family ?

Sgt. Camplair (1919-1999) eventually made it out of the kitchen and got married in 1946:

On a side note, it can be pointed out that as the family had actually emigrated from Germany - George was born in Berlin - fate might well have found him in another kitchen, peeling Zwiebeln for the Wehrmacht.

The Life of George


George Hans Camplair
27 Jun 1919
Berlin, Germany
2 Dec 1999 (aged 80)
McMinnville, Yamhill County, Oregon, USA

News-Register, McMinnville, Oregon, December 4, 1999

A memorial service for George Hans Camplair of McMinnville will be held at 11 a.m. Monday in Trinity Lutheran Church, McMinnville.

Mr. Camplair died Dec. 2, 1999, in Willamette Valley Medical Center, McMinnville. He was 80.

He was born June 27, 1919, in Berlin, Germany.

He and Mary Jane McNutt were married in 1946.

He worked with the Army Corps of Engineers during World War II in Africa and Hawaii. He continued as a cartographer with the Corps in Washington, D.C., from 1945 to 1979, when he retired.

He moved from Virginia to Portland in 1993 and had lived in McMinnville since 1994.

Mr. Camplair was named Volunteer of the Year in 1998 by the Oregon Alliance of Senior and Health Services. He had worked as a volunteer for Meals on Wheels, Loaves and Fishes and the McMinnville chapter of Habitat for Humanity.

He was a master gardener and worked many hours on landscaping projects as a member of the garden committee at Hillside Manor, McMinnville. He was a hike leader for McMinnville Senior Center. He belonged to Trinity Lutheran Church.

Survivors include two sons, Christopher Camplair of Portland and George M. Camplair of Nashville, Tenn.; a daughter, Nancy Phelps of Portland; and eight grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife in 1981; and a brother, Peter Camplair, in 1971.

Memorial contributions may be made to Habitat for Humanity, McMinnville Chapter, 342 N.E. Third St., McMinnville, OR 97128.

Arrangements are under the direction of Heritage Memorial, Portland.

For crying out loud

A sergeant peeling onions? Must have been as rare then as it has been during my time in another army.

Well, at least now I know what "kitchen police duty" means.

Door Color Conventions

Would they have painted the area around the handle which also extends to the trim for avoiding dirty handprints, or is there another reason for doing that? Low light contrast for the 0300 KP arrivals, maybe?

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