Hello, readers! Today is an exciting day for my new blog series, The '40's on Tuesday! Today I will be hosting a guest post from one of my favorite bloggers, Faith; from Chosen Vessels and Stories By Firefly. Faith is a passionate writer, potter, and Christian teenager, who does a great job with both her blogs, and is actually in the process of writing a book based in World War II. So have a wonderful week everyone, and I hope you enjoy Faith's post! -Amy
"Hey everyone! I hope you are all having an awesome day today. :) I'm so excited to be guest posting here on my friend’s lovely blog! (Thanks for inviting me over here, Amy!)
While on the subject of the 1940s, my goal today is to enlighten you all on the history of what we now know as the United States Air Force – which during the Second World War was actually a branch of the U.S. Army. I discovered these super cool facts while researching about the Air Force for a book I'm working on that's set in WWII. I hope you enjoy…
(If you're familiar with this time period and anything comes off to you as odd or incorrect, please let me know! I'm certainly not an expert on the subject. ;))
A Boeing B-17, Flying Fortress – a common
bomber plane during WWII.
The U.S. Air Force was known under several different labels before it became what it is today. Starting out as the Aeronautical Division of the U.S. Signal Corps (1907-1914), it soon changed to the Aviation Section of U.S. Signal Corps (1914-1918).
The Division of Military Aeronautics was established May 20th, 1918 – but only lasted four days! On May 24th, the War Department changed it to U.S. Army Air Service (1918-1926) and, at the same time, established the Bureau of Aircraft Production. In July of 1926, it was again changed, this time to the U.S. Army Air Corps – a title which lasted longer than any of its predecessors.
During the summer of 1941, with more ground in Europe being conquered by the Nazi empire with each passing day, Americans were becoming worried. No doubt they wondered when, if, or how soon the United States would be sucked into the war that already held their mother country in its evil and powerful grasp. With the threat of war gaining more severity, the U.S. Army Air Corps became the U.S. Army Air Forces on June 20th, 1941. This title lasted throughout World War II and for the years following.
The U.S. Army Air Force played an important role in winning the war against the Axis forces (Germany, Italy, and Japan). Unlike with WWI – at which time it had been just over ten years since the Wright brothers first successful flight near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina – aircraft involvement was a profound factor of the war. The thousands of men and planes that made up the U.S. Army Air Force (USAAF) flew combat missions, evacuated the wounded, and dropped supplies to troops on, or near, the front lines.
Douglas C-47, a cargo plane used for troop transport,
cargo delivery – and soon into the war – air evacuation.
At the time, the Army Air Forces was made up of sixteen different air forces stationed in various war theaters – from the Pacific, Europe and Indo-China to South America, the Mediterranean and Australia. With 2.4 million members (as of March 1944), including officers and enlisted men, and 80,000 aircraft (July 1944), the USAAF was a massive branch of the U.S. Army and an active part of winning the war.
Falling years – decades even – behind, such air forces as the Royal Air Force (RAF, started in 1918) and the German Luftwaffe (established in 1935), the U.S. Army Air Force disbanded in the fall of 1947. Then the independent United States Air Force was created September 18, 1947, two years after WWII.
Thanks for reading and I hope you learned something from this. :D I'd love to have you visit me at Stories by Firefly or Chosen Vessels. :)
Blessings in Christ!!