JOHN LOUIS WILLIS was well-known in fraternal circles in North Camden and was politically active after World War I and the democrat leader of Camden's 10th Ward. After the election of 1922 when Camden changed to a commission form of government, he was given a job in the city assessor's office. He was quite active in Camden Lodge No. 111, Loyal Order of Moose and other fraternal organizations such as the Improved Order of Red Men and the Patriotic Order Sons of America. John L. Willis was also quite active with the Pyne Poynt Athletic Association, the Carnation Social Club, the Camden Maennerchor Yearly Benefit Association and the Don't Worry Social Club.

Great-granddaughter Michelle Willis wrote the following:

I do not know a whole lot about him. He was my grandfather's (Harold Louis Willis) father. His name is John Louis Willis Jr. He was born April 17th 1882 in New Castle, Delaware. His parents were John L. Willis and Sophie Middleton. He moved to 528 North 5th Street in Camden NJ sometime between 1904 and 1905 with his parents and siblings. His brother was Foster Willis who was also part of the Pyne Poynt Athletic Association. His sister Sophie (Sophie C. Willis Goodyear Smith) married Otis Smith who was the care taker of Pyne Poynt Park. In 1905 John L Willis' occupation was a brass finisher. In 1908 he married Helen Cooper Lange whose father Ernest Lange lived across the street at 625 North 5th Street. Her mother Kate Streich Lange died when she was about 7. At some point she was placed in an orphanage. 

Her orphanage bible is still in our family with a date of 1902 on it. At some point after that she reunited with her father who had remarried. John L Willis Jr. and Helen Cooper Lange had 3 children George William Willis (1908-1978) Gladys Eleanor Willis (1909-1910) and my grandfather Harold Louis Willis (1919-1999). In 1913 John L. Willis' occupation was listed as an iron worker. He moved in 1914 to 522 Vine Street. His parents also moved with him to that address. His occupation at that time was listed as a Sheet metal worker. Between September of 1918 and January 1920 he moved to 723 York Street in Camden and his occupation was listed as a superintendent. About 1923 he became a clerk in the assessors office. He died from pneumonia on June 7th 1930. He was buried in Arlington Cemetery in Pennsauken NJ. 

Camden Post-Telegram
February 13, 1906

Charles Mulford
Albert Mulford
Pearl Street
Ellmore Brothers

Camden Daily Courier
April 19, 1907

John L. Willis
George Glenn Sr.
George Glenn Jr.
Edward Jacobs


Camden Daily Courier
January 3, 1908

Camden Post-Telegram * April 19, 1907
Charles Glendenning - William Glendenning - Eugene Borgard - Walter Graham

Camden Post-Telegram * January 6, 1911

Camden Post-Telegram
July 31, 1912


World War I Draft Card

Camden Post-Telegram * April 11, 1922

Pyne Poynt Athletic Association - Frank Sheridan - John L. Willis - Charles A. Them - Alonzo Hires
Joseph G. Corson - Samuel J. Edwards - William H. Kelley

Camden Post-Telegram * July 13, 1922

Dexter Metal Company - Dr. James Smith - John L. Willis

Camden Daily Courier
 July 20, 1922


Camden Post-Telegram * July 20, 1922


Camden Post-Telegram * August 5, 1922



John L. Willis (center)


Camden Daily Courier
September 27, 1922

Frank Oberman
 John L. Willis

Camden Daily Courier * April 23, 1924



Camden Courier-Post
April 8, 1927

Camden Lodge No. 111 Loyal Order of Moose
John L. Willis - Thomas Colsey
Michael J. Mulvihill - George E. Danford
Dennis J. Cooney - Charles J. Harper
David B. Peterson - Joseph B. Jones

Camden Courier-Post
April 20, 1927

Camden Courier-Post
December 29, 1927

Camden Courier-Post
April 8, 1930