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Other WWI Aviation Airfields, equipment, tactics, training, uniforms and all other WWI aviation topics

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Old 20 January 2004, 10:01 AM   #1
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I am working on a general reference military atlas for publisher Facts On File. This is to be titled ATLAS OF AMERICAN MILITARY HISTORY. There's a spread in the book devoted to American air power in World War I and we would like to include a map that shows the location of American airfields in France and Belgium during the war. Another possible map would show air support during the Meuse-Argonne offensive, an offensive in which I understand air forces played an important part. We'd like to find a resource that shows this information so we can use that to make the correct maps. I'm sure this is something that is readily available if I knew where to look. If anyone knows of such a resource please let me know. Thanks!!
Old 20 January 2004, 10:23 AM   #2
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Dear Armurry (if that really is your name),
Please try the link below:

It's a website about Lt. Frank Luke, Jr., and it also has two hand-drawn (read: crude) maps, towards the very end of the presentation, showing the advance field, about 4 miles behind the AEF's front line, to the east of Verdun, that was used by both the 27th (Luke's) and the 94th (Rickenbacker's) Squadrons, USAS (and, certainly, a strong possibility it was used by other units as well).

You'll also be able to note that the USAS' 1st Pursuit Group was based, at least during the last months of the conflict (and during both Saint-Mihel and the Meuse-Argonne battles) at Rembercourt.

Lastly, please refer to the bible of the USAS, James J. Sloan's WINGS OF HONOR (Schiffer; available at Amazon, but only as a special order, whatever the the hell that means).

Best of luck in your research,
Captain Lewis
Old 20 January 2004, 12:52 PM   #3
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Dear Captain Lewis,

Aaron R. Murray would be the longer version.

This is great. Thanks a lot for the help. This site reminds me of reading the Diary of an Unknown Aviator, which I thought was unusual to have read, but which I bet everyone who comes here knows about.

Best wishes,
Old 21 January 2004, 08:06 AM   #4
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Dear Aaron,
Actually, I've come up with an even better source book for your research--

Hostile Skies: A Combat History of the American Air Service in World War I
by James J. Hudson (1997, Syracuse University Press)

-- And it's available on Amazon as a paperback!

I was perusing my copy late last evening-- ah, the joys of insomnia!- and came across two maps which showed the locations of the USAS aerodromes-- this should prove invaluable to you in your research...

Oddly enough, while it makes note in the text of the advance airfield at Verdun, it fails to indicate this field on the map. I've attached a drawing of this field, from the Frank Luke site that I indicated in my previous post-- while it's not too clear, it should give you an idea of the location of the advance field, as well as the balloon field (to the lower left, above the compass in the picture) where Luke dropped his legendary message ("Watch three balloons on the Meuse. Luke"; there are a number of versions of this message, in one case even giving map co-ordinates...)

As for Diary of an Unknown Aviator, there's a fairly good DVD available, detailing the actual story behind this book, with some truly fantastic images (many from the German film, "D III 88"). Speaking of fantastic images, first go to there you'll find a poster that Russell did advertising the production-- and when you view the poster, you'll also find a link to the DVD site... $30 for the DVD, and well worth it...

Captain "Axis Mundi" Lewis
Old 23 January 2004, 11:49 AM   #5
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Dear Captain Lewis:

I'm going to order the book now. Thanks for the help with this project. If you would like to e-mail me your full name and any titles, it would be great to thank you correctly in our book for the help with this.

The DVD sounds good.

Old 23 January 2004, 06:10 PM   #6
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The drawing below was made by Fred Erdman about 1967 in an exchange of correspondence with an American researcher. Most of it is correct, but the scale is off just a bit. At the time that this drawing represents (9/1918), the 94th was not yet using this field. For that matter, neither was the entire 27th. Only B Flight was stationed there, in absolute secrecy, under Jerry Vasconcells.

Let me know if you need any more info on this field. It was about 200 yards outside old city wall of Verdun. That's probably close enough for your project, though. Best of luck.
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