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Bombing of Aegean Aerodrome.

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whiskymac View Drop Down
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    Posted: 27 May 2016 at 06:40
Can anyone confirm for me the location of a bombing attack circa 1918 on one of the Aegean aerodromes, and which Flight/Squadron it concerned?

The attack destroyed at least one Bessoneau hangar which I believed contained Camels and DH4S?

I've seen an image of the destroyed hangar somewhere, but I'm damned if I can remember where I saw it! Possibly in an old Journal? I'm pretty sure it was on either Thasos, or at one of the sites on Lemnos.

Cheers all.
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Ian Burns View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ian Burns Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 2016 at 22:31
Peter,
Do you have any dates other than a vague 'circa 1918'?

If you could tie it down to a month or two that would be useful.

Ian
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote whiskymac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2016 at 11:38
Ian - apologies for being vague regarding possible dates. I've been looking for clues in War in the Air vol 5. Two DH4s apparently reinforced C Sqn.at Gliki (Imbros) in Oct 1917 and continued to be used into early 1918.

DH4s were also used in the attacks on the Goeben - flying I think from Marsh, Lemnos - so this aerodrome, as well as Gliki, could possibly be the site of this bombing.

I can't see any evidence of RNAS DH4s destroyed in enemy attacks in RN Aircraft Serials and Units, so I am wondering if the machines could have been RFC aircraft, for which I have no references.

I really should know by now to make better notes when coming across things like this! It saves a lot of grief later.
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Ian Burns View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ian Burns Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2016 at 17:22
"I really should know by now to make better notes when coming across things like this! It saves a lot of grief later."

Been there, done that! I never learn.

Let me see if I can find anything.

BTW. One DH4 ended up in Turkish markings...
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Ian Burns View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ian Burns Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2016 at 17:51
Hi Peter,

OK. My source is Ole Nikolajsen's Ottoman Aviation 1909-1919 - an excellent source in English well worth having a copy. Look at: http://www.ole-nikolajsen.com/new%20ottoman%20details.pdf

On page 206, together with two photos of captured DH4's, is the following:
A strong force of 6 seaplanes attacked Mavro Island on the 1st June [1918] wrecking the airfield and destroying the radio station.

There may be other references elsewhere.

The seaplanes may have included two Hansa-Brandenburg W.29's. Also available were Friedrichshafen FF.39's and Sablatnig SF.5's.

The latter attacked Tenedos on 2 April 1918.

Peter, given your interest in the area you really should get Ole's book. I find it invaluable. If frustrating to use at times. Biggest draw back is a lack of index. I wrote a review for the Journal some time ago, don't think it was published...

Here it is:
OTTOMAN AVIATION 1909-1919.
Ole Nikolajsen.
First published 2012 – Updated version.
On CD only from author, 20 €/30$ incl. pp.
www.ole-nikolajsen.com

This is a completely revised and updated edition of a publication that first appeared in the late 1980’s. As no commercial publisher has been willing to take a risk, the author has made it available in CD format. Thank goodness.
For your money you get a CD with the book in three different formats – reduced pdf and word versions and full size. I find the reduced pdf works best with my computer, but for better quality images use the full size version. They just take longer to down load.
The book is 269 pages, divided into fifteen chapters. The first three cover pioneering aviation and the Balkan Wars; the next ten detail the First World War; the final two chapters are really appendices: A listing of aircraft delivered 1912-1918 to both Turkish and German units, complete with service histories and colour profiles, and a listing of aircrew – Turkish and German. The text is well written in clear English, the photographs and maps are embedded in the text. Sometimes this results in captions being only partially visible, but just opening up the full size version page on your computer will sort that out. Most of the maps are better viewed in a larger scale.
The depth of research is astounding. Ole and his original colaborator, Bulent Yilmazer, have spent several decades gathering information, and photographs. There are several hundred images in the book. I had seen a handful previously, in old issues of the US Cross and Cockade Journal, and a few other publications, but almost all are new to this reviewer. As you might expect the quality of the photographs varies enormously, but where else will you find a DH4 in Turkish markings?
I have to admit to not enjoying reading books on a screen, so I had a copy printed out for my use. After just a few weeks it is already well thumbed and, because there is no index, has a lot of Post It notes sticking out!
If you have any interest in aviation beyond the Western Front this publication is essential reading and research material.

Ian
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whiskymac View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote whiskymac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2016 at 17:56
Just checking through War in the Air again - p356, mention of enemy guns firing on 17 Sqn aerodrome at Orlyak, 9 August 1917, - 2 machines and 2 hangars destroyed. The following page mentions 'frequent bombing attacks on the aerodrome at Thasos', but no more.
I saw the image in question at the FAAM recently and it jogged my memory. It is captioned as Mudros, presumably Marsh, but with no other details.
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whiskymac View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote whiskymac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2016 at 18:16
Thanks Ian. My last reply must have passed yours somewhere in the ether! I shall definitely check this publication out.




Update, 31st May. I've just found the date - and location - of the enemy action.

Talikna seaplane base, north end of Mudros Bay, Lemnos, 24th September, 1918.

10 machines destroyed, among them, Fairey Hamble Baby N1201, and Short Type 184 N1269. I have the serials of the other machines. Would these have been intended for 266 Squadron, seeing as this Sqn formed only three days later?

It seems as though my original mention of Camels and DH4s may have been wide of the mark.

Any other info regarding the Talikna raid gratefully received.

Edited by whiskymac - 31 May 2016 at 17:53
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NickForder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Jun 2016 at 07:29
I would endorse Ian's comments about Ole Nikolajsen's Ottoman Aviation book, but it does need to be studied as the information you may seek isn't necessarily all in the same section.
It did allow me to identify the float section held by the Museum of Science & Industry in Manchester and confirm, once and for all, that it is from a Rumpler and not an Albatros W4.
Also, this book makes it clear that references to Taubes and Avitaiks was the product of poor recognition, and raises the question as to just what was attacked (and claimed) by the RFC in Palestine before Pascha 1 arrived.

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whiskymac View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote whiskymac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Jun 2016 at 09:53
Thanks Nick. It does sound as though this is a 'must have'!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NickForder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Jun 2016 at 10:05
There is very little else (in English) on air operations in support of the Turks. 

Air Enthusiast ran a series and there have been articles in C&C USA/ Over the Front, but mostly on FA 300. The C&C US series based on Hauptmann Erich Serno's papers is worth reading, though not in isolation as it has a natural bias.
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