In Issue 4 of Aviation Classics the clock turns back to World War One, when military aviation was in its infancy and aerial combat was a new concept of war. During this era, as well as much courage the airmen still showed elements of chivalry – hence the edition is called Knights of the Sky.
Numerous topics are featured, including the formation of the Royal Flying Corps under the leadership of General Henderson, the Order of Battle of the Royal Air Force when it was established as the world’s first independent air service on 1 April 1918 and the formation of the US Air Service. Other articles range from flying the fragile fabric covered biplanes over the trenches of the Western Front to the little-covered war in the Sinai Desert and even the first aircraft carrier strike in history.
We’ll look at an array of the aircraft types flown during the 1914-1918 conflict, from the world’s early fighters such as the Sopwith Camel and Fokker Dr.I Triplane, to the first long-range bombers such as the British Handley Page O/400 and Germany’s Gotha, plus there is a detailed account of the first bombing raid on Great Britain by Zeppelin airships.
Flying these aircraft was extremely dangerous – with enemy scouts, anti-aircraft shells and small arms fire from the ground all aimed at hitting them, once their aircraft was critically damaged the pilots had no parachutes to help with their escape. There was much valour shown and many aviators were awarded the Victoria Cross during the conflict. One that is featured in this issue tells of a teenage Canadian pilot who after being injured several times by German fighters still managed to land his burning aircraft between the lines in no-man’s land and then rescued his observer from the wreckage while being fired at from the enemy trenches. Some of the most famous pilots are of course featured too, including Albert Ball VC and Manfred von Richthofen, the infamous ‘Red Baron’.
Within the 132 pages, the material will again be presented in the popular Aviation Classics style, with articles written by well-known and established aviation authors and historians, and lavishly illustrated with historic wartime photographs. Much colour will be included too, with stunning contemporary air-to-air and detail images of some of the world’s best restored original aircraft of the era and reproductions built to exact original specifications.
In 1952, the French Government began studies ... More ›