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2001 Closed threads from 2001 (read only)

 
 
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Old 21 March 2001, 03:12 AM   #1
Denny
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In looking through the AEF units participating in France, I saw a listing for the 9th Army Observation Squadron (First Observation Group). Following the squadron name it said--in parentheses--night. Can anyone fill me in on their nightime MILITARY activities?

DD
 
Old 23 March 2001, 01:21 PM   #2
Greg VanWyngarden
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Hi Denny,

The US 9th Aero Squadron was a pretty unique unit.It was the first American night observation squadron to see duty.Its main job was to observe enemy operations at night, and its crews brought back info about the movements of trains and trucks,dropped flares to reveal the whereabouts of enemy troops,and bombed and strafed enemy targets.Lt. Thomas Box was the first operational C.O, and the unit was declared operational for its first mission in the night of Sept. 14/15, 1918, based at Vavincourt.The unit flew Breguet 14A2's, equipped with red and green naigational lights and brackets for Michelin landing flares under each lower wing.In the postwar period the unit was sent to Trier, Germany on Occupation duty and continued to fly missions photographing strategic areas in Germany.

You can find out more about the 9th Aero in James J Sloan's excellent book Wings of Honor, from Schiffer. Charlie Woolley wrote a terrific history of the unit for Cross & Cockade Journal, Vol. 12, No. 2, Summer 1971. Alan Toelle and I did a short article on the colors and markings of the unit which appeared in "Over the Front", Vol. 2 No. 2, Summer 1987.
 
Old 23 March 2001, 02:55 PM   #3
Denny
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Greg: Thanks! Developments that I read about here keep on amazing me.
DD
 
 

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