Admiral William A. Moffet: Architect of Naval Aviation


More than any other individual, R.Adm. William A. Moffett (1869-1933) shaped naval aviation during its critical formative years. This first full biography details his remarkable achievements.
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More than any other individual, R.Adm. William A. Moffett (1869-1933) shaped naval aviation during its critical formative years. This first full biography details his remarkable achievements.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
As chief of the Navy's Bureau of Aeronautics, Moffett (1869-1933) was responsible for bringing aviation into the U.S. fleet and guaranteeing it a major role by his aggressive advocacy of aircraft carriers. Trimble ( Wings for the Navy ) describes how Moffett mastered the civilian and military bureaucracy in Washington, developed his farsighted vision of air warfare at sea, and became the guiding force behind legislation leading to the first major expansion of the aircraft manufacturing industry. Moffett believed in the integration of aviation within the overall service structure; his rival, Army General ``Billy'' Mitchell, argued that aviation alone could fight and win wars. The debate between these two spokesmen for opposing viewpoints (the issue remains unresolved) constitutes one of the most interesting aspects of the book. Trimble reconstructs the final flight of the Akron on April 3-4, 1933; Moffett died when that experimental airship crashed in heavy rain and fog off the New Jersey coast. This biography confirms that Admiral William Moffett accomplished more than anyone before or since to secure the place of naval aviation in America's military establishment. Photos. (Dec.)
Library Journal
In this informative biography, Trimble ( Wings for the Navy , Naval Inst. Pr., 1990) describes the trials and tribulations of the man who became the first head of the navy's Bureau of Aeronautics in the 1920s. Moffett (1896-1933) was deeply involved in the design and implementation of the navy's new light airship and aircraft carrier programs. His love of the airship and his feeling that it could be an effective weapons system led to his untimely death in the crash of the airship Akron. One of the more interesting aspects of this book is the running battle between Moffett and Gen. Billy Mitchell to see what service, navy or army, would be in control of the navy's aircraft. This is a fascinating look at the father of naval aviation. Strongly recommended for any aviation and/or naval history collections.-- Terry Wirick, Erie Cty. Lib. System, Pa.
A biography of Moffett (1869-1933), the man who shaped naval aviation during its critical formative years in the 1920s and 1930s. Shows how his remarkably sophisticated understanding of what later would be called the military-industrial complex laid the groundwork for the force that fought and won World War II in the Pacific. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781560983200
  • Publisher: Smithsonian Institution Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/1993
  • Series: History of Aviation Ser.
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 6.39 (w) x 9.29 (h) x 1.43 (d)

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