Air War Chronology

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by konev, Jun 24, 2006.

  1. konev

    konev New Member

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    Gentlemen,

    I am new (today) to this forum, so if this question has been asked before, please forgive me.

    I am putting together a chronology of the air war over Europe during the war. This would include not only the order of battle changes, but also the missions flown by everyone.

    What I have right now are the following materials:
    USAAF:
    Both the Combat Units and COmbat Squadrons of the Air Force.
    US Army Air Force chronology (including 8th Air Force missions)
    RAF:
    RAF Squadron histories
    RAF Bomber Command diaries (from MoD site)

    Next up:
    Go to Luftwaffe homepage and get their unit histories
    RAF site with type aircraft assigned to Squadrons

    My question is where do I look to get details on missions flown by the RAF/USAAF? Or does someone have them handy?

    I hope someone can help.

    regards,

    konev

    PS: The Soviet Air OB is obtainable through the archives, but unless your Donald Trump to pay for the research, its virually untouchable.
     
  2. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Roger Freeman has an excellent chronology of the 8th AF missions.

    Book name is "Mighty Eight War Diary"

    Alos search the web for individual USAAF group histories. Some times all their missions are listed.
     
  3. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    well I can tell you for fact that not all Luftwaffe histories have or will be written and not even BA/MA has the materials from Freiburg
     
  4. Jabberwocky

    Jabberwocky Active Member

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    John Forman's 5-volume "Fighter Command War Diaries" is day-by-day description of Fighter Commands operations in the ETO during the war. It contains cliams and loss lists for every day of the war, give highlights of every days operations as well as several page summaries of major operastions.

    The "Bomber Command Loss List" is similar. I think its 4 volumes long, and lists evry bomber lost by Bomber Command in the ETO and MTO during the war.

    Unfortunately, each series comes in at AUS $70-100 per book, so I've been collecting fairly slowly, starting with Foreman's work.

    For German Claims, check out Tony Wood's excellent LuftWaffe claims and casualties website. He has PDF lisings of almost all LuftWaffe claims in the West.

    If your covering the air-war over Europe, DON'T FORGET RUSSIA. They sacrificed far more men in the air than either the RAF or the USAAF did. Check out Bergstroms 'Black Cross/Red Star' series, for an exhaustive history. If you can find volume 1 for anything less than $200, your doing well (and I've seen it a book shows for $350), but Volume 2 is only about $60-100 and Volume 3 is set to come out. Bergstrom is also just about to release a detailed history of the BoB, including losses and claims from both sides.

    Another good source of raw information is the AFHRA USAAF statistical digest.

    Its available in at:

    afhra.maxwell.af.mil.

    or if you computer can access .mil sites (mine can't for some reason) try:

    http://permanent.access.gpo.gov/lps51153/airforcehistory/usaaf/digest/index.htm

    which is slightly less complete, and not available in PDF from like the AFHRA site.

    RAF basic unit histories can be found at:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/

    http://www.rafweb.org/Menu.htm

    each is reasonably accurate, and cross-references with the other fairly well



    Its important to realise that histories and records , official or otherwise, often contradict each other, even specific technical ones and on what would appear to be relatively simple matters. Its aso important to realise the difference betwen claims and kills and that the more you look into the issue, the murkier it becomes.
     
  5. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Your best bet for some info on Unit Histories (and it is not all and no way you will find all) is Luftwaffe Codes, Markings and Units 1939-1945 by Rosch.
     
  6. Twitch

    Twitch Member

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    Bravo for your effort in attempting to put together a chronology. As for when you mention "details on the missions" if it is narratives of the pilots' you want they are unfortunately spread over a zillion books as mission stories are told. If it is clinical histories of squadrons and such that is somewhat more accessable but ends up as a bunch of rather dry statistics.

    I have to come back once I remember and find a huge book I have somewhere that has each American aces' kill statistics, ie. where, when, what type enemy shot down etc. I have too many books and many are in the garage and I'm going blank on the title right now.
     
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