Matrix Games Forums

Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

Looking for help researching united states airforce

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition >> Looking for help researching united states airforce Page: [1]
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/3/2015 5:56:25 PM   
herra

 

Posts: 9
Joined: 9/5/2008
Status: offline
Hello,
I first posted this in the general forum and was advised to post here also.
I'm doing research on the united states Air force post world war 2, but maybe also including world war 2, Specific years between 1945 to 1965.
I'm looking for someone with knowledge of the service and also with the uniforms. If you can help please PM me and I can share more specific information.
Thanks for your time and apologies for being off topic.
John


Post #: 1
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/3/2015 7:16:45 PM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline
There are many knowledgeable people in the WitP community, and many have vast libraries of military history books in their personal collections. But it would probably be better if you posted your needed info in the forum here as the community as a whole would probably serve you better than just an individual. As a whole I bet our combined book collections would rival any university library, so by posting it in here you’ll get the benefit of all that plus guys who would be more than happy to do the research needed.

We’re kind of a geeky lot when it comes to military history, we challenge each other by posting rare pics and the community then tries to figure out what it is. If you did something similar I bet you’d be more than pleased with the results.

Jim


_____________________________


(in reply to herra)
Post #: 2
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 4:32:47 AM   
wdolson

 

Posts: 10398
Joined: 6/28/2006
From: Near Portland, OR
Status: offline
Here are some resources:

https://archive.org/details/AirForceCombatUnitsOfWorldWarIi
http://www.afhso.af.mil/
[link]www.afhso.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-101202-002.pdf[/link]

If you are looking for information about uniforms, there are quite a few Osprey books published on uniforms of armed forces. The series is called the Warrior Series.
http://www.ospreypublishing.com/warrior/

Bill

_____________________________

WitP AE - Test team lead, programmer

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 3
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 7:21:05 AM   
herra

 

Posts: 9
Joined: 9/5/2008
Status: offline
Thanks for the replies much appreciated, I have a photograph, which I have received this year concerning my grandfather the main reason for this post was to find maybe one or two individuals that I could share the photo with to help identify as much information as possible. I'm reluctant to put the photo online, but maybe via a pm with someone happy to take a look.
The photo in question is a group photo from a unknown unit in the US air force. Not sure of the date the photo was taken.
Jim if your happy to take a look at the photo I would be happy to share it with you?
Again any help is greatly appreciated

John

< Message edited by herra -- 1/4/2015 8:23:21 AM >

(in reply to wdolson)
Post #: 4
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 1:31:56 PM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline
More than happy PM sent.

Jim

_____________________________


(in reply to herra)
Post #: 5
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 6:06:23 PM   
herra

 

Posts: 9
Joined: 9/5/2008
Status: offline
Here is a photo of my grandfather and if anyone is able to assist with information regarding unit etc. I believe the Rank of my grandfather is staff sergeant, but not sure what his actual role is so if there is anyone with any knowledge they might be able to share regarding any aspect of the photo I would appreciate any information you think is relevant.
If you need the full image please let me know
Thanks for any help
John





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by herra -- 1/4/2015 7:07:40 PM >

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 6
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 7:54:07 PM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline
Just to get the conversation started, here’s a cut and paste of the email’s I sent John:

quote:

Not a lot of detail to go on in the photo, but based on the images here:

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/5846-post-wwii-50s-60s-us-air-force-uniform-photos/

I’d say he’s wearing the standard sage green fatigue uniform of his era, so what he’s wearing isn’t really helpful. I do note he and several others in the photo have no name tag or other markers on their uniform other than sewn on rank insignia, so perhaps he’s in a technical field that saw him working on aircraft or something and extraneous uniform markings would have possibly caught on delicate instrumentation he’d have been working on so they weren’t required to wear normal uniform markings in their technical field (just a wild guess).

You may want to try posting the image on the above linked forum as the specific make-up of the different ranks in the unit image may be the only real lead you have to try and discern what kind of unit it is. And only someone with very specific knowledge of the make-up of the units of that era (retired airforce is your best bet) would be able to make an educated guess.

With a total of 40 men in the image, 1 a captain and 1 a lieutenant, it appears to be a platoon. There are a lot of staff sergeants (your grandfathers rank) and above (at least 10 men perhaps more) for a 40 man unit, so this is what leads me to believe it’s probably a technical unit. The military tended to give extra promotions to keep trained technicians re-enlisting so tech units tended to be a bit lopsided when it came to what rank structures existed within those units.

The only unusual insignia in the photo is the guy with jump wings kneeling in front. Then there is the guy kneeling second from right with a black circular insignia of some kind on his right shoulder. I have no idea what that is but it might be a clue. The guy with glasses in the back row center appears to have a similar black circular insignia as well but his is above his left breast pocket.

Looking at the image again I see another guy kneeling in front third from left with the same black insignia. It may be nothing but insignia denoting qualifications similar to the jump wings insignia, but if you’re lucky the qualification itself might give a clue to what the unit specialized in. Other than that I see nothing that will help in your quest to figure out more information about your grandfather. The uniforms worn are simply too sparse when it comes to special markings.

My guess is this was a standard work day for the unit and everyone got pulled together for a quick photo unannounced, so no one had their dress uniforms with all their badges and ribbons on that day.


quote:

Did a little more digging and looking here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Badges_of_the_United_States_Air_Force

I see nothing that would explain the black circular insignia’s, so you may be in luck of figuring out at least some idea of what the unit did if we can just figure out what those black insignia are.

The guy with wings next to the guy with the parachute badge more than likely is wearing a WWII aircrew badge. Click on the enlisted aircrew badge on the above linked page and it takes you to a page with images of the different aircrew badges and the one I think it might be is the WWII one pictured on the right side. But there simply isn’t enough detail in the photo’s resolution to discern if it’s that or one of the other wing shaped badges. But just like the parachute qualification badge, I don't think it tells us anything about the unit, since he could have earned the badge while flying combat missions in WWII or Korea while in a different unit. Then again this unit might be a combat unit, we just can't tell.


Anyone have any idea what the black circular insignia/badges are?

Jim


_____________________________


(in reply to herra)
Post #: 7
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 8:05:09 PM   
KHawk

 

Posts: 61
Joined: 7/3/2004
Status: offline
I see four gentlemen wearing the black devices that I believe are personal dosimeters.

KHawk

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 8
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 8:08:02 PM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: KHawk

I see four gentlemen wearing the black devices that I believe are personal dosimeters.

KHawk


Good call, I think you are correct:

http://www.orau.org/PTP/collection/radiac/DT60.htm

Jim

_____________________________


(in reply to KHawk)
Post #: 9
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 10:30:31 PM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
One of them has a parachute badge. The Staff Sergeant to his left, I don't remember what those wings represent. Why would someone with a para badge be in this group? Did he xfr from the Army? A captain and two louies in a group this small seems unusual. The parachute, could he have been a ground spotter? Besides the officers they're pretty heavy on high ranking sergeants too. The second guy from the right in the back row, is he a major or Lt. Col.? Those badges on his collar seem duller in finish than the others that just say US, I believe. 2nd row from back, third guy from left, where'd that corporal get that hat? The pin on the hat of Sgt. Scott, what is that?

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 10
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 10:37:32 PM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
First row, first guy on left, looks like and "enlisted aircrew" badge over the left pocket.

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 11
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 10:41:53 PM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
Dude with funny hat, second row from back, third from left, that looks like a "space and missile" badge on his hat.

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 12
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 11:47:08 PM   
PeteG662


Posts: 1263
Joined: 6/7/2004
Status: offline
The Air Force didn't become a separate service until 1947. The guy with the jump wings (actually looks like he has a combat jump) could have been part of the Army prior to the separation of the services and continued to wear the insignia. Over his right front breast pocket is a Unit Citation which is given to Army personnel. Based on the uniforms it looks to be 1950s era.

Tallyman662

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 13
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/4/2015 11:52:02 PM   
wdolson

 

Posts: 10398
Joined: 6/28/2006
From: Near Portland, OR
Status: offline
The picture was definitely taken after the Air Force was established in 1947. I know initially they used the army rank insignias, but eventually changed to the chevrons used today. Looking at the number of stripes, it looks like the picture is after the number of enlisted ranks was expanded in the mid-50s. I don't know what significance it has, but it looks like there are quite a few sergeants among those in the picture and few low ranking people. Some appear to be wearing uniforms for a hot environment while others have on long sleeve shirts.

Bill

_____________________________

WitP AE - Test team lead, programmer

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 14
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 12:07:58 AM   
pnzrgnral

 

Posts: 144
Joined: 2/16/2004
From: El Paso, AR
Status: offline
My two cents...
The guy with the airborne wings, bottom row: those are master parachutist wings and what appear to be combat jump stars (those of us silly enough to jump outta' perfectly good planes call 'em "mustard stains.") He also wears what appears to be a Presidential Unit Citation over his nameplate. Easy enough to guess WWII Army combat vet, possibly enlisted after hostilities broke out in Korea - also possibly recalled to duty as a reservist (remember Ted Williams?) The uniforms are also pretty much the same for early/mid '50s - I know, because my stepdad was drafted into the USAF in '54 and he gave me his blue Ike jacket with his one-stripe airman rank still sewn on, back when I was about ten years old. The "space and missile" badge actually looks to be pin-on rank (look at his sleeve rank), similar to what we used in the Army - pinning rank onto headgear.
The black devices hanging from epaulettes and such: pretty good deduction those are dosimeters. We used a different type (IM-93?) that resembled a ballpoint pen. I'd like to posit something else. Those COULD be earplug cases; we wore them very much the same way and painted them black. Wear of the cases was by a unit commander's prerogative.
Thanks for posting this; it's always fun to look at this stuff and try to figure these things out.

_____________________________

Rangers Lead The Way!
Sua Sponte

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 15
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 12:18:07 AM   
wdolson

 

Posts: 10398
Joined: 6/28/2006
From: Near Portland, OR
Status: offline
Another thing I just noted, several guys are wearing wedding rings. Those are uncommon among people who work directly with aircraft. I once knew a C-141 pilot and his commander banned wearing any kind of jewelry on the flight line because it could get caught in machinery. He once met a guy who got his ring finger caught in a landing gear mechanism because of his wedding ring.

Bill

_____________________________

WitP AE - Test team lead, programmer

(in reply to pnzrgnral)
Post #: 16
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 1:58:56 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
Very cool Mr. Olson. The sarge second from right front row definitely has too much bling. Parachute guy looks like he's wearing his high school ring!

I'm going to guess this is a Thor ground crew and not a Navaho. This seems to me to fit the facts as we see them the best.

(in reply to wdolson)
Post #: 17
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:12:01 AM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline
With the possibility that some of the men are wearing Dosimeters, I’m starting to think the lack of any name tags or other identifying insignia on some of the men’s sparse uniforms may have more to do with security and counter-espionage than technical considerations. Given that this is early on in the cold war anything to do with the military and nuclear weapons would have been some of the most highly classified work in the armed forces at the time. So whatever this unit did it was probably very classified work and keeping the identities of the men who worked on the actual weapons secret would have been a priority.

Based on some of the conversations in the militaria forum I linked, the Airforce went through a period of identity crisis with caps and uniforms around the late 50’s early 60’s. So my guess is this was taken sometime near the end of the 50’s or beginning of the 60’s given how non-uniformed their uniforms are. Heck even the name tags aren’t all placed over the same side breast pockets.

Jim


_____________________________


(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 18
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:33:44 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
OK, I'm seeing a pattern here, this is Hollywood stuff. I don't know how they put actors together from different times, but they always do stuff I don't understand. Front row, 3rd from left is Bruce Dern. Front row, 2nd from right is Rutger Hauer. Front row 3rd from right is Paul Newman. 2nd row 1st from right is Tom Hardy. 4th from right is Anthony Hopkins. 5th from right is Edward Norton. I recognize more but can't remember their names.






Attachment (1)

< Message edited by geofflambert -- 1/5/2015 3:43:01 AM >

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 19
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:38:46 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Jim D Burns

With the possibility that some of the men are wearing Dosimeters, I’m starting to think the lack of any name tags or other identifying insignia on some of the men’s sparse uniforms may have more to do with security and counter-espionage than technical considerations. Given that this is early on in the cold war anything to do with the military and nuclear weapons would have been some of the most highly classified work in the armed forces at the time. So whatever this unit did it was probably very classified work and keeping the identities of the men who worked on the actual weapons secret would have been a priority.

Based on some of the conversations in the militaria forum I linked, the Airforce went through a period of identity crisis with caps and uniforms around the late 50’s early 60’s. So my guess is this was taken sometime near the end of the 50’s or beginning of the 60’s given how non-uniformed their uniforms are. Heck even the name tags aren’t all placed over the same side breast pockets.

Jim



Security was pretty haphazard, Stalin knew the US had the bomb before Truman did.

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 20
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:39:55 AM   
Jim D Burns


Posts: 4013
Joined: 2/25/2002
From: Salida, CA.
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: geofflambert
Front row 3rd from right is Paul Newman.


The guy kneeling front row 3rd from right and kneeling second row 5th from right look like they could be brothers to me.

Jim


_____________________________


(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 21
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:47:16 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Jim D Burns


quote:

ORIGINAL: geofflambert
Front row 3rd from right is Paul Newman.


The guy kneeling front row 3rd from right and kneeling second row 5th from right look like they could be brothers to me.

Jim




Paul Newman and Edward Norton are brothers? I had no idea. Wait til I tell everyone on the web!

(in reply to Jim D Burns)
Post #: 22
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 2:48:12 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
I swear I'm seeing some forumites in there too. Who are they?

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 23
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 3:13:06 AM   
geofflambert


Posts: 14842
Joined: 12/23/2010
From: St. Louis
Status: offline
OMG, don't you see Hugo Weaving? You know, Elrond in the Tolkien stuff and Mr. Smith in The Matrix? Is Neo in there?




Attachment (1)

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 24
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/5/2015 7:58:02 AM   
herra

 

Posts: 9
Joined: 9/5/2008
Status: offline
Thanks for all the feed back and interest. Does anyone know any details about what a staff sergeant in that uniform would have done or area he might have worked in as I've done extensive searches and found nothing other than "ground crew" etc..
I believe my auntie had said my grandfather was based in Tripoli at some point in his career. Again thanks for all the feed back.
I've found out that the USAF had a base in Tripoli called Wheelus and there are badges, but I can't confirm from the picture if any of the badges are present, but my eyes aren't the best so maybe someone might spot something. Wikipedia has good images of the badges.

< Message edited by herra -- 1/5/2015 9:26:52 AM >

(in reply to geofflambert)
Post #: 25
RE: Looking for help researching united states airforce - 1/6/2015 7:43:03 AM   
CaptBeefheart


Posts: 2272
Joined: 7/4/2003
From: Seoul, Korea
Status: offline
Maybe he was part of a Matador squadron of the 38th Tactical Missile Wing in Europe that did qual tests at Wheelus (see this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wheelus_Air_Base ).

Cheers,
CC

_____________________________

Beer, because barley makes lousy bread.

(in reply to herra)
Post #: 26
Page:   [1]
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition >> Looking for help researching united states airforce Page: [1]
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.289