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Algernon Blackwood's Shorter Supernatural Fiction (2 vols.)

Terrys Texas Rangers

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The Defeat of the U-Boats

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Sabre and Foil Fighting

The Fourth Leonaur Book of Ghost and Horror Stories

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General Von Zieten

Armoured Cars and Aircraft

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R. F. C. H. Q.

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R. F. C. H. Q.
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Author(s): Maurice Baring
Date Published: 2010/04
Page Count: 232
Softcover ISBN-13: 978-0-85706-071-6
Hardcover ISBN-13: 978-0-85706-072-3

The early days of today’s Royal Air Force

The exploits of those ‘daring young in their flying machines’ who fought a daredevil war in the air in machines made of little more than wood, canvas and wire continue to enthral students of air warfare—both academic and casual. Whist these remarkable aviators appear within these pages, they are not this book’s principal theme. The author was engaged in the momentous task of actually creating an air force—the original Royal Flying Corps—and keeping it in the air as a vital contribution to the war effort against Imperial Germany. This fascinating book details the earliest days of an arm of British forces which today we accept as a norm. Constant problems with maintenance, parts, new machines and greater refinements in the development of new and improved aircraft undertaken against the demands of operational necessity are the central story of this account told by one who was personally involved. Available in soft cover and hard cover with dust jacket.

September 5th, 1917. —We were bombed again last night, and one bomb fell in a field opposite to the gate of our approach.<br>
September 6th, 1917.—There was a thunderstorm last night, so there were no bombs and no anti-aircraft, so we were able to get a night’s rest.<br>
September 7th, 1917.—No. 27 Squadron have no red label ammunition.<br>
September 10th, 1917.—I went to London with the general for one night.<br>
September 20th, 1917.—News of more fighting.<br>
September 24th, 1917.—Voss, the star German pilot, has been brought down. When we heard the news at luncheon the general sent me to No. 56 Squadron, where the pilots had brought him down, to get details. This was Rhys-Davids’ account of the fight as he told it me himself:<br>
I saw three Huns attacking one S.E.; one triplane, light grey and brown, with slight extensions, one red-nosed V.-Strutter, one green-nosed Scout. I never saw the green Scout again after the first dive. I then saw four S.E’s. fighting the triplane and the red-nosed V.-Strutter. The triplane’s top-plane was larger than the middle-plane. The engine was not a Mercedes, but I thought it was stationary. I wasn’t sure. It had four guns. I thought the pilot was wearing a black leather flying-cap. Fired six or seven times and then went off to change my drum. The Hun either had armoured plates or else he was very lucky.<br>
Last dive but one. I went for him. He came from the East. Not quite straight behind, fired from a hundred yards to 70 and emptied a whole drum. The triplane only turned when 20 yards away. I turned to the right, so did he. Thought situation impossible, and that there would be a collision. I turned left and avoided him. I next saw the tri-plane at 1,500 feet below gliding West. Dived again, opened fire at about 100. Got one shot out of the Vickers (My Lewis drum was empty) without taking sights off. Reloaded my Vickers.<br>
Fired another twenty or thirty rounds. He over-shot and zoomed away. Changed drum, then made for the red-nosed V.-Strutter and started firing at about 100 yards. The V.-Strutter was flying at an angle of about 45 degrees across the front, and I came at him slightly above. We both fired at each other. He stopped firing. I dived underneath him and zoomed up the other side. I saw the V.-Strutter about 600 feet below spiralling North- West. I then lost sight of him and kept a good look-out low East, but saw no signs of him. During the whole scrap there were 11 to 14 E.A. higher East who made no attempt to fight.<br>
McCudden said he saw a crash N.N.W. of Zonnebeck.<br>
Maybery said:<br>
I saw the triplane and went down after it. It was grey with slight extensions as far as I can remember. It was followed by a green Scout. Someone came and shunted the green Scout. After that I saw Rhys-Davids dive on the tri-plane, followed by the red-nosed Scout. I attacked the red-nosed Scout. I zoomed up over him and couldn’t see anything of them. I saw a triplane going East, but this one seemed to be different and green.<br>
Hoidge said:<br>
I saw the bright green Hun going down on Maybery’s tail at about 3,000 feet, and I fired with Vickers and Lewis at about 100 yards in order to frighten him. When about 30 yards away, the Hun turned South, and was flying directly in the line of fire. I finished a full drum of Lewis gun at about 10 yards from him. He turned right over and went down in a short dive and turned over again. The last I saw of him was going straight down in a dive about 800-1000 feet. I stopped following him because the triplane was right up above him and I had an empty drum. I flew to the line climbing, and put on a full drum and came back and attacked the triplane from the side as it was flying nose on to McCudden. I attacked him four or five times, but I didn’t see what happened after this. I never saw the red-nosed Scout at all. The green man didn’t get a chance to scrap.<br>
During dinner we received news that Dunkirk was being bombed, and that shells had fallen on the engine repair shed.<br>
September 25th, 1917.—The propellers in No. 9 Naval Squadron (Admiralty design) give more revs. (1,150-1,350) near the ground, but don’t climb as well. The Fourth Brigade say they have only one 20-inch focal length camera.<br>
September 26th, 1917.—Yesterday was a splendid day in the air.<br>
October 1st, 1917.—Last night there was a heavy bomb raid on St. Omer. Forty bombs were dropped on the town and the neighbourhood. Three hospitals were hit.
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