Hat in the Ring: Hat in the Ring

Overview

When Congress declared war in April 1917, the Europeans had already deployed their third generation of fighters, equipped with machine guns and capable of speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour, while the American Air Service consisted of only a handful of aviators in unarmed trainers. In this first in-depth study of America's first air warriors, Frandsen shows how in just two years the 1st Pursuit Group organized, absorbed French and British technology and experience, and became a well-led, respected, and lethal...
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Hat in the Ring: The Birth of American Air Power in the Great War

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Overview

When Congress declared war in April 1917, the Europeans had already deployed their third generation of fighters, equipped with machine guns and capable of speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour, while the American Air Service consisted of only a handful of aviators in unarmed trainers. In this first in-depth study of America's first air warriors, Frandsen shows how in just two years the 1st Pursuit Group organized, absorbed French and British technology and experience, and became a well-led, respected, and lethal force over the trenches of the Western Front.

Fascinating portraits of America’s first aviation leaders and legends, including Eddie Rickenbacker, Billy Mitchell, Frank Luke, Benjamin Foulouis, Bert Atkinson, and James Meissner, provide new and controversial perspective on one of America’s least understood wars and on the origins of the most powerful air force in history. Toxic personalities, competing French-British tactics and aircraft, and an experienced, aggressive enemy forced the Americans into a tactical crucible with deadly results, including 73 casualties in the Meuse-Argonne campaign alone.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781588342812
  • Publisher: Smithsonian Institution Press
  • Publication date: 7/6/2010
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 746,201
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Bert Frandsen has a Ph.D. in the history of technology from Auburn University and is an assistant professor of joint warfare studies at the USAF Air Command and Staff College. He lives in Alabama.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
1 The Insiders 1
2 Jimmy Meissner and the First Team 27
3 Organizational Training 49
4 First Victories 72
5 Wings 96
6 The Clash of Cultures 119
7 America's First Air-Land Battle 150
8 The Second Battle of the Marne 173
9 St. Mihiel 200
10 Meuse-Argonne 226
11 Conclusion 265
Notes 275
Index 307
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