Messerschmidt 109--Raf AE479 Pics

Discussion in 'Aircraft Pictures' started by samjkramer, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. samjkramer

    samjkramer New Member

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    Hey all...
    Newbie to the board but I thought I might get some help here so I wanted to shoot out a quick post. I work at a local non-profit in online sales and recently someone donated a metal box containing a few hundred negatives. I'm big into genealogy so naturally, I wanted to find the soldier's family and return them but after digging without a name it looks to be impossible...

    We've been selling off bits and pieces of the collection but I've held a certain grouping back because it seemed incredible to me. I'd like to post the pics and get your thoughts.

    I know that there is a Messerschmidt 109 pictured and it looks as if this soldier (he was a Petty Officer, 1st Class Aircrew Gunner and Aviation Ordnanceman, BTW) was photographing the filming of a propaganda film for the Allies. Any thoughts on the other planes or the Messerschmidt would be fantastic. I just can't bring myself to sell at least this little bit...

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    The tail on the above photo looks to read X7718.

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    Any help on identifying the planes and what might be going on in the photos of the Messerschmidt would be great. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    nice pics...welcome to the forum samjkramer
     
  3. al49

    al49 Well-Known Member

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    Hi,
    I'm not an expert but the Messerschmitt photo tells me an interesting story.
    As far as I know, most of the BF 109 captured by the British were late models found more-less wrecked on European airfields after D-Day.
    But the one in the picture seems to be a BF 109-E (Emily) whose production ended in early 1941 to be replaced by the better -F (Friedrich)
    It could be an aeroplane which force landed in UK during the Battle of Britain.
    For sure there will be real experts that will tell you everything on the other aeroplanes.
    By the way, do you have any other photos of German/Italian aircraft in the collection?
    Cheers
    Alberto
     
  4. imalko

    imalko Well-Known Member

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    Great set of pictures. I wouldn't sell them either. The planes are (from the bottom picture upwards):

    - Bell P-39 Airacobra (C-47 Dakota in the background)
    - Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress (early version)
    - Chance Vought F4U Corsair (in the foreground of the picture)
    - Lockheed Hudson
    - Bristol Type 156 Beaufighter
    - for group of high-wing planes shown on this picture I'm not sure which precise types are these
    - Grumman TBF Avenger
    - Curtiss P-40
    - Messerschmitt Bf 109E (E-4 subtype by the looks of the canopy frames) with a p-40 in the back

    Hope this helps. I'm not familiar with the story behind this captured Bf 109 though.

    And welcome to the forum samjkramer.
     
  5. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    The Messerschmitt (not schmidt) is a Bf109E1 from JG 54 (formerly JG21) which was captured by the French in 1940, and subsequently flown to the R.A.E. at Farnborough, UK, where it underwent extensive testing and evaluation. It was allocated the British serial number AE479, and given R.A.F roundels, although when first captured it had the French tricolor tail markings painted on the rudder. It was eventually sent to the USA, where the photo was presumably taken.
    The other aircraft in the photos are:- Curtiss P40, Grumman Avenger, in the line-up what appear to be a Stinson Reliant, Piper Cub/Grasshopper and a Fairchild Argus (possibly).
    The all-black twin-engined aircraft is a Bristol Beaufighter (night fighter), followed by a Lockheed Lodestar, Vought Corsair with a T6 Texan behind, an early Boeing B17C, and finally, a Bell P39 Airacobra, with either a Douglas DC2 or DC3/C47 (Dakota) in the background.
    Hope this helps.
     
  6. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    The B17 seems to be a different periods with the snow on the ground , the Lockheed has Canadian civil markings and is more then likely Trans Canada Airlines the forerunner of Air Canada
     
  7. beaupower32

    beaupower32 Well-Known Member

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    Its intresting that the 109 still has the swastica still applied. Any reason why, as I figured it would be painted out along with the rest of the markings.
     
  8. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    I hadn't spotted that! Far as I remember, it was painted out, along with the Balkenkreuz , and French markings applied. The Staffel number,'1', and the Gruppe badge, were left originally, but painted out whilst the aircraft was at Farnborough. The French markings in turn were overpainted with RAF roundels, and the RAF fin flash, the French tricolor stripes on the rudder being overpainted. The swastika shown in the pic appears to be 'solid' black, which was incorrect for the period, so perhaps it was re-applied in the U.S., maybe for that photo-shoot/filming?
     
  9. imalko

    imalko Well-Known Member

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    Also in the last picture where Airacobra is shown a part of the Bf 109 wing can be seen with swastika painted over the roundel...
     
  10. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    #10 A4K, Apr 23, 2010
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2010
    I think it has been re-applied, as was the US habit of the time - even the Ho IX received Hakenkreuz that were never applied originally.
    Also say this as the size and style (as Terry said) is wrong, and I can't see them carefully painting the white around it, myself...

    Welcome Sam, and if you're interested in others photos and colour plans of that '109, drop us your address in a PM.

    Evan
     
  11. Snautzer01

    Snautzer01 Well-Known Member

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    The Messerschmitt Bf-109E-3, W.nr.1304, flown by Fw Karl Hier of 1./JG76 landed near Woerth, Bas-Rhin, some 12 miles on the French side of the border and was captured by the French on 22 Nov 1939. It was first flown in French colours but retained its I/JG76 insignia, constructor's number and white figure 1.

    The aircraft was handed over to the RAF at Amiens on 2 May 1940 and the following day Brown flew this aircraft to the A AEE at Boscombe Down. On 14 May 1940 the plane was flown to the RAE and given the serial AE479.
    On 7 April 1942 the plane was shipped to the USA.
     

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  12. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Thanks Snautzer! That's clarified a few things. I replied having only briefly looked at some conflicting information, and have since found the books I should have refered to! You are, of course, quite right. Captions to some photos in the source I used had been transposed, and the aircraft in question was accompanied by an illuastration of the E1 of JG21 (later JG54), which has the unit badge visible on the starboard side, and was 'White 1', captured by the French also.
    The aircraft pictured is often confused with the E3 of JG51, W.Nr 4101, which force-landed at Manston, and was given the RAF serial DG200, and normally pictured without the opening section of the canopy, which was removed to accommodate the British pilot testing it!!
    Great pic BTW, haven't seen that one before, thanks.
     
  13. samjkramer

    samjkramer New Member

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    MAN! Thanks so much fellas!

    I wish I could figure out exactly WHY this Messerschmitt was at this particular airfield. There has to be something big going on -- there are men in full dress, cameras, movies being made, so many different aircraft. I guess it'll remain a mystery...

    The P39 (or 40?) in the last picture I posted has a little background I've dug up. The serial on that plane is 41-7249 and there's a record showing that at one point it was assigned to 306th Fighter Squadron, 338th Fighter Group and piloted by Henderson O. Rose when it landed short of the field at Dale Mabry in FL.

    That pilot, Henderson Rose, was later a 2nd Lieutenant with the 347th Fighter Squadron, 350th Firghter Group and was KIA in North Africa on 20 Aug 1945. He's buried at the Tunis Permanent Cemetery in Tunisia...

    Little details like that make this pictures just so awesome to me. I don't know how anyone could basically throw away such a great part of their family history...

    Again, thanks for all the help and if anyone has anymore thoughts, toss 'em out there!
     
  14. al49

    al49 Well-Known Member

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    Hi,
    just a quick comment, are you sure that guy was KIA on 20 Aug 1945? It should be 20 Aug 1943 because the war in North Africa was over in 1945!
    Cheers
    Alberto
     
  15. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Some of the aircraft, and their markings, seem vaguley familiar somehow. I wonder if these were collected for a movie, maybe 'Ferry Pilot', or 'A Yank in the RAF' or similar? Of course, it could be something to do with an evaluation and test centre.
     
  16. res6kgcr

    res6kgcr New Member

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    Hi samjkramer

    Most of the photos are taken at LaGuardia, airport NYC, the private civilian aircraft probably are also at LaGuardia by look of all that concrete.

    I don’t know where the navy aircraft are but by the red and white water tower in the background they are at some U.S. training field.

    The B-17C is 40-2046 used for gun turret test at Wright field (note the turrets), and is listed as to Eglin Air Proving Ground May 1942 for testing 2 20-mm cannon in nose, and to RFC Oct 4, 1945.

    The Beaufighter X7718 is listed as received at Wright field 17 May 1942, then listed scraped at AAF School Applied Tactics, Orlando, Florida by 1 April 1944.

    It looks to me that the photos with the solders with the rifles are part of some AAF demonstration in the spring or summer of 1942. And it looks like that it was film for a newsreel which I would love to see.

    Best to you all

    Tom Michel
     
  17. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Great info, and first post, Tom!!
     
  18. samjkramer

    samjkramer New Member

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    You're right Al, got my dates transcribed wrong! Anyone know of anyway to find out exactly what happened to him, short of requesting records? It's a tangent that really doesn't relate to the photos at all but I'm still curious.
     
  19. samjkramer

    samjkramer New Member

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    Tom, THANKS!

    Might there be a newsreel repository somewhere? I've got a trip scheduled to NARA in St Louis late this summer -- perhaps they could help. I too would LOVE to see that...
     
  20. al49

    al49 Well-Known Member

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    If the guy has been hit by a German or Italian aircraft it should be possible to find the who was, I will let you know if i find something.
    Alberto
     
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