Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: Bomber Command Terminology: Sisters?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Lions Bay, BC
    Posts
    201
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts

    Default Bomber Command Terminology: Sisters?

    From the 419 Squadron ORB for April 4, 1944: 'A special lecture was given to all aircrew by S/Ldr Brown and F/O Folkes of the Station Intelligence Staff, on the subjects of "Pathfinder Markings", "Flak" and "Sisters".'

    Does anyone know what "Sisters" means?

    Jim

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Lions Bay, BC
    Posts
    201
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts

    Default

    Well, I thought one of you lot would know the answer!?!?

    Anyways, I have received a reply from one of my veteran friends. He suggests...

    ""It probably refers to the term "Sisters" used at briefings when reference was made to "Sister squadrons", being other squadrons involved in the operation.

    I am assuming that they were refering to the squadrons carrying out supporting runs with the PFF in a bid to saturate defences. We occasionally participated in this, my most memorable one being Bohlen. We, on these occasions, would have been at the head of the main force with a different call sign, reverting to the main force call sign after the target run throughs.

    Where they linked "Flak" & "Sisters" it was probably refering to them all being "In the thick of it""

    Jim

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wiltshire UK
    Posts
    673
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Jim
    31 SAAF & 34 SAAF were sister squadrons based at Celone, Foggia, Italy 1944/45
    Brother sqdns seems more appropriate, being more masculine !!

    Anne

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    1,231
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Yes, but ships, even ships of the air, were always female.
    David

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wiltshire UK
    Posts
    673
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    I wonder why ?

    Anne

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    1,231
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Here's a link with a succinct explanation.

    http://www.boatsafe.com/kids/kidsquesshe.htm

    ... but, according to Yahoo, the practice is ending in these days of gender-neutral speech. Ships are now being referred to as "it" by Lloyd's.

    http://ask.yahoo.com/20060627.html
    David

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wiltshire UK
    Posts
    673
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Thanks for the amusing links
    Anne

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    180
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Has anyone any more thoughts on 'Sisters '?

    In the Station Orb for 405 Squadron on 15th Nov 1941:

    "...heavy and accurate flak after bombs released. Sisters fired with success." and then on the 30th "Searchlights numerous but flak not as intense as usual. Sisters used with no result"
    There are also a few mentions around that time of IFF being used to successfully douse searchlights and flak, which I believe was later shown to be impossible, so I wonder if Sister was some other sort of countermeasure they were using.

    Rgds

    Pete

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    1,765
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 7 Times in 7 Posts

    Default

    "Bomber Intelligence" by WE Jones has the following:

    SISTERS: British name for enemy recognition cartridges or "Colours of the Day"

    I hope it is a useful start point

    Regards

    Pete
    Main areas of research:

    - CA Butler and the loss of Lancaster ME334 (http://rafww2butler.wordpress.com/ )
    - Aircrew Training (Basic / Trade / Operational / Continuation / Conversion)
    - The History of No. 35 Squadron (1916 - 1982) (https://35squadron.wordpress.com/)

    [Always looking for copies of original documents / photographs etc relating to these subjects]

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    180
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    Thanks Pete, it seems to make more sense in this context than sister squadrons. Now I'm wondering if they just fired off their own colours of the day in the hope the flak stopped or did they attempt to mimic the Luftwaffe's "colours of the day", if indeed they had such a thing.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •