Top definition. Kilroy Was Here. An old graffiti that U. GI's would write on the walls of occupied areas. This was very popular During WW2 and the Korean war. This Legend of how " Kilroy was here " starts is with James J. Kilroy , a shipyard inspector during WWII.
Where does Kilroy was here come from?
Of all the graffiti that humanity has created across the centuries, perhaps most touching are the inscriptions left behind by soldiers. Since long before the Achaeans set sail for Troy, military life has been marked by loneliness, inaction, anxiety, sudden intense drama and the very real prospect of early, violent death. Because of a heightened sense of impermanence, perhaps, the scrawls, squiggles and drawings that record the passage of troops to and from battle—or, as the play Mister Roberts so aptly put it, "from boredom to tedium and back again with sidetrips to ennui"—take on a poignant significance far beyond a handprint in the wet concrete of a new sidewalk, initials in a heart carved into an old tree, or high-school graduation messages spray-painted on a highway overpass. Military graffiti can range from fatalistic to scatological to ironically funny, from countless plaintive variations on "Why me? During World War I, British soldiers, after reading the motto on the belt buckles of German soldiers— Gott Mit Uns God is with us —wrote on the walls of their trenches, "We got mittens too. They are works on canvas—drawings, words and doodles inscribed on the undersides of a troopship's cramped hammock-style berths by soldiers and marines on their way from Oakland, California, to Vietnam. The discovery of these tantalizing fragments, documenting the experiences of men who were soldiers once and young, came about as an unintended consequence of another quest altogether. Fisk consulted Art Beltrone, a Keswick, Virginia-based collector of military memorabilia who has served as an adviser to films and museums for 30 years.
For a few years during and after World War II , he was ubiquitous: a doodle of a big-nosed man, peering over a wall, accompanied by the inscription "Kilroy was here. A classic Bugs Bunny cartoon from , "Haredevil Hare," shows just how deeply Kilroy had penetrated into pop culture: thinking he's the first rabbit to land on the moon, Bugs is oblivious to the slogan "Kilroy was here" prominently etched on a rock behind him. Where did the meme —and that's exactly what it was, 50 years before the invention of the internet—"Kilroy was here" come from? Well, graffiti itself has been around for thousands of years, but the Kilroy drawing seems to have derived from a similar graffito, "Foo was here," popular among Australian servicemen during World War I ; this was also a depiction of a big-nosed cartoon figure peering over a wall, but it was not accompanied by any words. Chad," was appearing in England. The Chad doodle may have derived from the Greek symbol for Omega, or it may have been a simplified adaptation of a circuit diagram; whatever the case, it carried the same "someone is watching" connotation as Kilroy.
Kilroy, the bald guy with the long nose hanging over a wall, may be the world's first viral meme. While it didn't originate with U. The graffiti originated with a British doodle called " Mr. Chad ," who commented on rationing and shortages during the war. Often accompanied by the phrase "Wot?