Object ID
Object Name
Cover, Pillow
Object Collection
Date Created
1941 – 1942
Object Entities
Government, U.S. (created by)
Hontos, Cornelia (owned by)
Hontos, Cornelia (is related to)
Hontos, George (is related to)
Hontos, Arthur (is related to)
Object Description
Pillow case dedicated to mothers of soldiers at Camp Chaffee, Arkansas. The pillow case is large burgundy square with gold fringe. The back sheet is white fabirc that is open on one side to allow the pillow to slide in. The front of the case is decorated with felt lettering and floral designs. The top and center is focused on the emblem of the "US Army" over an eagle holding an olive branch and arrows in its talons, a flag crest over its chest, and holding a scroll that reads "E pluribus unum" in its beak. However the felt has worn down so the bringht pinks, yellows, and oranges have blurred together and the details are hard to see. Just over the eagles head beneath the words is circle decorated with stars. Beneath the eagle insignia is a dedication to Army mothers bordered by three pink roses on both sides. The roses are in an identical pattern with a just opening bud at the top above two fully bloomed roses. The petals still hold some of their pink color but the stems and leaves have mostly lost their green. The dedication reads: "Mother To one who bears the sweetest name and adds lustre to the same who shares my joys who cheers when sad the greatest friend I ever had long life to her for there's no other could take the place of my dear mother" The very bottom reads "Camp Chaffee, Ark."
During World War II it was a popular practice for members of the army to send pillowcases such as this one to mothers and sweethearts with poems and their training camp's name on it. Georgre Hontos most likely purchased this pillowcase and sent it home to his mother. Camp Chaffee was established in Arkansas in 1941 to accomodate the increase in troops needing training. George James Hontos, was born in Chicago, Illinois on March 27th, 1920. The son of James and Cornelia Hontos, brother of Dimitra, Arthur and John, who also served in the United States Navy. Two weeks following the Pearl Harbor disaster, he was called to serve his country in the Army. He trained for six months at Camps Yulen and Wallace, Tex. On March 1, 1942, the 434th Coast Artillery Battalion (Anti-Aircraft) was activated. With this outfit, he was send to England. After the completion of training, they took part in the liberation of Africa. George died from a landmine left by the Nazis, trying to aid some wounded women and children in Tunisia, on May 24th, 1943. Private George J. Hontos was awarded posthumously the Soldier's Medal and the Purple Heart.
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Cover, Pillow, 1941 – 1942, The George J. Hontos Collection, National Hellenic Museum, https://collections.nationalhellenicmuseum.org/Detail/objects/6800. Accessed 03/24/23.