William G. Everson

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William Graham Everson
Everson wg.jpg
General Everson as National Guard Bureau Chief
Born (1879-07-01)July 1, 1879
Wooster, Ohio
Died September 13, 1954(1954-09-13) (aged 75)
Portland, Oregon
Buried Riverview Abbey, Portland Oregon
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1898–1945
Rank US-O8 insignia.svg Major General
Unit Indiana Army National Guard
National Guard Bureau
Commands held 332nd Infantry Regiment
76th Infantry Brigade
Indiana Army National Guard
Chief of the National Guard Bureau
Battles/wars Spanish–American War
World War I
Other work Baptist clergyman
Public speaker
College president

William Graham Everson (July 1, 1879 – September 13, 1954) was a Major General in the United States Army who served as Chief of the National Guard Bureau.

Early life[edit]

William Graham Everson was born in Wooster, Ohio on July 1, 1879. He was raised in Indiana, and joined the Army for the Spanish–American War, enlisting in Company E, 158th Indiana Infantry, and rising through the ranks to First Sergeant.[1][2]

Subsequent career[edit]

Everson received his ordination as a Baptist minister in 1901, and was the pastor of churches in Boston, Indianapolis, Louisville, Cincinnati and Muncie. He also became a well known public speaker as a lecturer on the Chautauqua Circuit.[3]

In 1903 Everson graduated from Franklin College, and in 1905 he was commissioned in the Indiana National Guard as a First Lieutenant in the Chaplain Corps.[4][5] In 1908 Everson graduated from Newton Theological Seminary.[6][7] He was promoted to Captain in the 3rd Indiana Infantry in 1909, Major in 1914 and Lieutenant Colonel in 1918.[8]

World War I[edit]

Everson was promoted to Colonel and commander of the 332nd Infantry Regiment, a unit of the 83rd Infantry Division.[9] The 332nd served in Italy, and were the only American troops to serve east of the Adriatic Sea, carrying out operations in Austria, Dalmatia, Serbia, and Montenegro.[10]

The awards and decorations Everson received for his World War I service included: War Merit Cross (Italy); Italian Sanctus Georgius (Saint George), Silver (for valor); Fatiche di Guerra (Italy) (for soldiers who served in the war zone for one year or more); Duca D'Aosta Medal (Italy) (for soldiers who served in or with the Italian Third Army); and the Star and Crown of Fiume (for defense of the Free State of Fiume).[11]

Post World War I[edit]

Everson continued his military service after the war. In 1922 he was promoted to Brigadier General as commander of the 76th Infantry Brigade.[12] Everson subsequently served as Adjutant General of Indiana.[13]

He graduated from the United States Army War College in 1923 and the United States Army Command and General Staff College in 1928.[14]

National Guard Bureau[edit]

In 1929 Everson was promoted to Major General and appointed as Chief of the Militia Bureau.[15] He served in this position until 1931, when he resigned in order to return to the ministry, accepting a position with the First Baptist Church in Denver.[16]

Later career[edit]

In 1931 Everson received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Franklin College.[17] From 1939 to 1943 he served as President of Linfield College.[18] Everson continued to serve in the military until reaching mandatory retirement age in 1945.[19]

Retirement and death[edit]

In retirement Everson resided in Portland, Oregon, where he died on September 13, 1954. He is buried at Riverview Abbey in Portland.[20]


  1. ^ United Spanish War Veterans, Department of Indiana, General Orders, 1937
  2. ^ Hyacinthe Ringrose, The International Blue Book, 1926, page 130
  3. ^ Frank D. Haimbaugh, History of Delaware County, Biography, William G. Everson, 1924
  4. ^ International Herald Tribune, The Front Page, 1887-1992, 1992, page 62
  5. ^ Oregon Guardsman, The New Chief, November 15, 1929, page 1
  6. ^ Newton Theological Institution, Bulletin - The Newton Theological Institution, Volumes 1–2, 1906, page 13
  7. ^ Andover Newton Theological School, Annual Catalog, 1912, page 262
  8. ^ U.S. Army Adjutant General, Recruiting News, The Chief of the Militia Bureau, February 1, 1931
  9. ^ Matthew J. Seelinger, Army Historical Foundation, "Viva l'America!" The 332d Infantry on the Italian Front, 2013
  10. ^ Joseph L. Lettau, In Italy with the 332nd Infantry, 1921, page 62
  11. ^ Levere, William C. (1928). The History of Sigma Alpha Epsilon in the World War. Menasha, Wisconsin: The Collegiate Press: George Banta Publishing Co. p. 152. 
  12. ^ Army-Navy Publications, Pictorial History Thirty-Eighth Division, 1941, page 137
  13. ^ O. K. Quivey, Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity, The Record, Fighting Parson Made Prexy, Volume 58, Issue 4, 1938, page 384
  14. ^ Oregon Guardsman, The New Chief, November 15, 1929, page 1
  15. ^ Chicago Tribune, New Militia Bureau Chief Here, February 9, 1930
  16. ^ Ralph Albert Parlette, The Lyceum Magazine, Volume 41, 1931, page 11
  17. ^ Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Pan-Pacific Who's Who, 1941, page 209
  18. ^ Christian Century Company, The Christian Century, Volume 60, 1943, page 305
  19. ^ William R. Denslow, 10,000 Famous Freemasons, Part One (A–J), 2004, page 30
  20. ^ Thomas E. Spencer, Where They're Buried, 2009, page 543

External references[edit]

William Graham Everson at Find A Grave

Military offices
Preceded by
Ernest R. Redmond (acting)
Chief of the National Guard Bureau
Succeeded by
George E. Leach