UPDATE: A very good friend of ours has informed us that HE sold this grouping to the individual that we obtained it from and that this person did NOT obtain the group from the family estate as he told us. He also informed us that when he sold this group it was much larger with many items and that the individual we obtained it from broke it up and added an aviation tunic to some items and claimed it was Captain Ooley’s Brother’s. So, if you see other items available somewhere else that are related to Captain Ooley, please beware and know that we did NOT break up this beautiful group.
WWI 81st “Wildcat” Division Officer’s Grouping Named to Captain Benjamin Harrison Ooley of Dayton, Ohio. Captain Ooley was assigned to the 324th Infantry Regiment and was the Commanding Officer of Motor Truck Company #2 attached to Division Supply Train 306. A bit more about his service can be seen in the photos below, including in the photo of a newspaper article with his portrait. This original newspaper article is NOT included with this listing, but a printed copy of the photo you see below is. This grouping includes Captain Ooley’s Complete, Camouflage Painted US M1917 Helmet, Large Leather and Canvas “Accordion” Case, Campaign Hat, Three Large Format Portraits and What Appears To Be the Named Sweatband that has separated from a Visor Hat. Camouflage painted US M1917 helmet remains in Very Good Condition showing only minor signs of age, wear and use. No dings, dents, rust or corrosion. Earth tone camouflage paint consists wavy and irregular segments of “pitch black,” “brick red-brown” and “grass green,” all separated by thin lines of “dijon mustard” yellow. Paint shows a bit of marring to the top with light visible age and wear, but remains very bold with rich color. Every aspect of the liner remains in very good to excellent condition with the exception of the cotton adjustment webbing which appears to have a small amount of rodent damage. No other readily apparent blemishes to any aspect of the liner. Chinstrap remains very strong and solid showing only light wear. Appears as though it may have had CPT Ooley’s initials, unit information or something of the like handwritten to it at one time, but the writing is now worn and faded. Officer’s private purchase campaign hat bears CPT Ooley’s Initials “BHO” perforated into the sweatband. Hat shows age, wear and use but remains in Good Condition, maintaining nice shape with sweatband and cloth chinstrap firmly in place. Officer’s hat cord shows considerable, clearly visible wear to the knot and acorns. Large canvas and leather “accordion” style case shows age, wear and use, but remains in very good condition. Measures approximately 36 inches in length and approximately 12 inches in diameter. No damage to any leather components, straps or buckles. Bears TWO name tags identifying it to CPT Ooley and also maintains it’s original train tag dated June 1919. Three large cabinet photos showing CPT Ooley in uniform measure 16 x 11 inches, including cardboard frame. All maintain excellent detail with very clear images. No readily apparent damage or blemishes of any sort. Loose leather sweatband is in poor condition, but his handwritten name and rank are visible to it under close inspection. We have no idea what became of the visor hat it was once attached to. Overall, an impressive 81st Division Officer’s grouping that displays great and will make an excellent addition to any WWI collection