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Go Back   The Aerodrome Forum > Archives > 1999

1999 Closed threads from 1999 (read only)

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Old 7 June 1999, 02:36 AM   #1
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What happened to the bullet that killed the Red Baron?
Old 7 June 1999, 02:59 AM   #2
Paul Reece
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As there was an entry and exit wound, I think it's safe to say that it went straight through and off into the wild blue yonder.
However, I remember reading somewhere, (possibly Carisella's "Who killed the Red Baron") that a medical orderly who undressed the body prior to the medical examination, found a bullet inside MvR's clothing, but threw it away(?), and a chance to establish whose gun it came from was lost forever.
Old 7 June 1999, 01:18 PM   #3
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I believe that the Harleyford book of the early 60s (Kimbrough Brown, et al) stated that The Bullet was retained by the orderly who returned with it to Australia but it disappeared in the 1950s.
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Old 7 June 1999, 03:14 PM   #4
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Thanks...but what is this Harlyford book you mention? Do you have a publisher or any details so I can try to trace a copy. I'd really like to know the name of the medical orderly you mentioned as I'd bet that 'The Bullet' will be stored somewhere, by someone who has no idea what it is. It would be interesting to have it examined to see if the experts can tell if it was fired by a Lewis gun, Vickers, .303 Lee Enfield or some other type. If it came from a Webley revolver old uncle Bob was right...he did shoot down the Red Baron!
Old 7 June 1999, 03:42 PM   #5
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Bob's your uncle?
Old 7 June 1999, 04:22 PM   #6
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I forget which book it was I was reading, but it stated that he was hit three times. The fatal bullet which went through his chest, the next hit him in the waist, and the last one hit him in the knee. One bullet or three, doesn't really matter. I would imagine that it was probably stolen, along with everything else that wasn't bolted down.
Old 7 June 1999, 04:45 PM   #7
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I forget where i read it, but good old Raymond Collishaw wanted the bullet to be examined to see if it was fired from a Vickers on the ground or in the air. It could easily be verified if it was ground fire or from a Camel. Aircraft MGs have different rifling in the barrels. they produce morfe of a spin if i remember correctly, so they are more accurate, since the constant shaking of the aircraft would make it inaccurate. However the man with the slug refused to let anyone have it. Personally I beleive that if it was examined they would find that it was from a Lee Enfeild .303 not a Vickers .303 MG.

the reason being I read the autopsy report and it stated that he didn't have his safety harness on and he smashed his face and broke his nose on the machine guns. I know for sure he always had his safety harness on while the aircraft was in motion. He almost died once on a routine flight in the country side due to the fact that the aircraft was weighted differently fromn what he was used to and he removed his hands from teh stick and it flipped upside down, but his harness kept him in. He vowed to always buckle up after that. I think he was beaten to death and shot by infantry. Brown who was the Canadian pilot who was credited with downing him never actually said that he downed him. He never really wanted to talk about it. That is assuming that I remember all of the details correctly. Also Manfred's father received a telegram that night that Manfred was safe and was a POW. He was seen on the ground alive. If i do remmeber correctly I think it's a bit strange don't you think?

Then again I wasn't alive in 1918 and I wasn't present at the scene and this is just speculation of what happened. I don't like to accept what history has been given to us, instead i find it much more interesteing to ask questions in order to find the real truth.


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Old 7 June 1999, 05:01 PM   #8
Rich Hicks
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I see the conspiracy theorists are at it again. I'm not at home, so can't check Carisella's book to verify the orderly's name, but he apparently DID find the bullet - either under the body or in MvR's clothing. He went home, unaware of the controversy surrounding the incident, and the bullet did disappear.

I've also read "The Red Baron's Last Flight", from Grub Street, and they thoroughly investigated all claims - coming to the same conclusion Carisella had almost 30 years earlier.

Old 7 June 1999, 06:47 PM   #9
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Hi guys
The medical orderly who prepared the Baron's body for autopsy was Cpl. E.J."Ted" McCarty.
"While the guards stood back, McCarty unbuttoned the Baron's outer fur-lined jacket. Then with the help of a guard, he slipped it down over the shoulders and arms of the corpse. He then undid the buttons of the Baron's inner flying jacket. As he struggled to slip that jacket over the shoulders and arms, he saw a large wallet tucked into a left breast pocket. McCarty quickly tugged the wallet out of the pocket, with a wink at the guard. When he did so, a spent bullet popped out with it and fell into the lining of the jacket. McCarty snatched up the slug and stuck it into his trouser pocket."
(Who Killed the Red Baron by P.J. Carisella pages 193-194)
McCarty also states in the same book that the bullet was lost in 1935 "when his mother died and he burned all sorts of papers and the bullet was lost in the debris".
Hope this helps.
Old 7 June 1999, 07:57 PM   #10
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I was pretty sure it sufaced again briefly on a stretcher somewhere in Texas next to a Govenor in the early 1960's but I can't confirm that.

regards all

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Not here is the vintage sweet;
'Tis cold as our hearts are growing,
And dark as the doom we meet.
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And soon shall our pulses rise:
A cup to the dead already-
Hurrah for the next that dies!
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baron, bullet

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