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Thread: photographer in THE ROYAL FYING CORPS

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    Default photographer in THE ROYAL FYING CORPS

    Hi
    I have a friend who was related to a photographer flying with The Royal Flying Corps his name was William Barnes he served with them during W W 1 Can any tell me please if they know of any books that have been written about this subject
    A Million Thanks
    Harold Dummer

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    I don't know about any specific books but Barker's A Brief History of the Royal Flying Corps in World War One (ISBN: 1841194700 - "brief" being 500+ pages) has some good descriptions of the photographic duties, and some of the problems encountered with the early cameras etc

    A

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    Default WWI Photography

    There is quite a lot of coverage (several chapters) in:
    Eyes of the RAF by Roy Conyers Nesbit ISBN 0-7509-1130-1
    The Army in the Air by Anthony Farrar Hockley ISBN 0-7509-0617-0

    Steve

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    "The Eye in the Air - History of Air Observation and Reconnaissance for the Army, 1785-1945" by Peter Mead (HMSO 1983)
    "The Western Front From the Air" by Nicholas C. Watkis (Sutton 1999)
    also recommended.

    Errol

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    Harold,

    Do you really mean a 'photographer'? So far as I'm aware the aircraft used for reconnaissance were almost invariably two-seaters, the crew consisting of a pilot and observer, either of whom (but usually the observer) would be responsible for any photography required. I suspect your man was an observer who was also responsible for defending the aircraft (amongst other things).

    Brian

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    Default Photographer in the Royal Flying Corps

    Hi All
    Once again a Million thanks for promt replies
    Harold Dummer.

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    Default WWI Photography

    Brian/Lyffe

    Surely you have seen all those vertical photos of zig-zag trench patterns from WWI? You need to check out the Roy Nesbit book listed above. In that book there are photos of camera installations on two vertical rails outside the a/c fuelage next to the rear cockpits on 2-seaters; there are photos of the cameras used in WWI and photos eg of mobile laboratories including their use in the Middle East.

    Steve

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    Steve,

    Perhaps I didn't explain myself clearly, what I was trying to say is that there was no such trade as 'photographer' specfically trained to fly and use camaras. The photographs to which you refer would in most cases have been taken by the observer as one of his many roles.

    There may have been photographers on the ground whose role was to process the photographic plates, but Harold's initial post referred to 'a photographer FLYING with the RFC' - that's was what I was querying.

    I have photographs taken over the trenches by an officer whose biography I'm writing, but he was firstly an observer before training as a pilot - he was never a 'photographer'.

    Observers were exceptionally brave men, dependent on their pilots to bring them safely down to earth. If a pilot was fatally wounded then the observer knew that he had next to no chance of survival. And, yes, I know there were instances of an observer taking control and 'landing' safely in such instances.

    Brian

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