Knights Of The Skies
The tactical, technological and training differences between Germany and the allied forces, ensured the British suffered a casualty rate nearly four times as great as their opponents. The losses were so disastrous that it threatened to undermine the morale of entire squadrons.
Royal Flying Corps (RFC) pilot training was often cursory, especially in the early days of the war. Many recruits had only 2 to 3 hours of flying instruction before being expected to fly solo. Men were often sent to France having logged only 15 hours in the air. 8000 young men died in Britain during flight training, which means that more died from accidents and equipment failures than from enemy action.
Most RFC pilots lasted only an average of about 3 weeks once they arrived at the Western Front. Those who weren’t killed, wounded, or taken prisoner might be posted out because of “nerves”. Flying was extremely stressful and dangerous. Those who lived through the first few weeks acquired skills that helped them live longer or even survive the war.
RFC pilots were not allowed to use parachutes, although the men who were up in observation balloons had them and often used them to escape an attack. Towards the end of the war, German pilots were using parachutes.
According to H.A.Jones’ War in the Air, a study of the UK’s Royal Flying Corps in WW1, the amount of time a pilot could expect to fly before becoming a casualty (killed, wounded, or
psychiatric) was a low of 92 hours in April 1917, and a high of 295 hours in August 1916. Note, in particular, that a much higher percentage of pilots became psychiatric casualties (modern-day PTSD) than would otherwise be expected (as high as 25% of all casualties), due to the radically higher stress of combat flight. Given that a typical combat flight lasted an hour or two at most, with an average number of mission at less than 1 per day, a pilot would last at least 4 weeks before becoming a casualty, to as many as 5 months.
- GGC-021 — Crashed Eindecker – Model height 9 x length 13 1/4 x width 6 1/4 Inches
The British did not have a separate Corps of Signals in the Great War: it was agreed that an independent unit would be formed in 1918, but for various administrative reasons it was delayed until 1920.
At the outbreak of war in August 1914 all the British Armies signalling/ intercommunication requirements were met by the Royal Engineers Signal Services (RESS) that was formed in 1908. Previously, in 1870, the responsibility for all military communications was officially given to the Telegraph Troop, of the Royal Engineers.
- GWB-015B — Royal Engineers Signal Service(RESS), 2 Pigeon Handlers
- GWB-063 — London Bus Passengers #2
- GWB-063D — London Bus Passengers Set #2
Great War – French Infantry
Raid on Saint Francis
- CAN-005 — Woodland Indian with Canoe – Limited Edition of 500.
THE NEW JERSEY PROVINCIAL REGIMENT
The Jersey Blues were raisd in 1755, by the New Jersey provincial government. It was originally composed of five companies, and was sent to the northern frontier, to guard it against the French. They were known as the “Jersey Blues”, partly from the blue coats of the regiment, and partly from the similarlity of the uniform to that New Jersey used in the war of Jenkin’s Ear.
On April 4 1758, the General Assembly of New Jersey voted to increase the regiment to a strength of 1,000 officers and men, including 100 grenadiers.
** PLEASE NOTE THESE FIGURES WOULD BE SUITABLE FOR THE BATTLE OF FORT CARILLON, TICONDEROGA, 8th July 1758**
- RRBNJ-002 — The New Jersey Provincial Regiment, 2 Line Infantry At Attention
- RRBNJ-002N — The New Jersey Provincial Regiment, 4 Line Infantry At Attention
- RRBNJ-008 — The New Jersey Provincial Regiment, 2 Grenadiers At Attention
- RRBNJ-008N — The New Jersey Provincial Regiment, 4 Grenadiers At Attention
In 1755, a regiment of New Jersey Provincials (500 men), known as the Jersey Blues, joined Shirley’s expedition against Fort Niagara. The regiment was under the command of Schuyler. The expedition departed from Albany and slowly advanced towards Fort Niagara along the Mohawk River. By mid September, Shirley realised that Fort Niagara was too strongly defended and abandoned his project. He retreated to New England, leaving the New Jersey Provincials to garrison Oswego. In December, the regiment was recalled to New Jersey where it took position on the frontier till next spring.
In the spring of 1756, the regiment was again on the northern frontier. It was divided into two parts, one garrisoned at Schenectady, while the other was placed under the colonel’s direct command. This latter detachment (500 men) was part of Shirley’s force which assembled in Albany in May. In August, when a French force under Montcalm laid siege to the complex of Oswego, 150 New Jersey Provincials were garrisoning the small Fort George. On August 14, when Oswego surrendered, the detachment of Fort George, including Colonel Schuyler, became prisoner of war and was brought back to Montréal. A new enlistment in New Jersey compensated for these losses.
In 1757, New Jersey refused to increase its contribution from 500 men to 1,000 men. In July, a detachment of 300 provincials, chiefly New Jersey men, was sent from Fort William Henry under command of Colonel Parker to reconnoitre the French outposts. On July 26, a large band of Indians, led by the French partisan Corbière, ambushed the detachment of New Jersey Provincials not far from Sabbath Day Point on the western shore of Lake George. Parker had divided his force and at daybreak three of his boats fell into the snare and were captured without a shot. Three others followed and shared the fate of the first. When the rest drew near, they were greeted by a deadly volley from the thickets, and a swarm of canoes darted out upon them. The men were seized with such a panic that some of them jumped into the water to escape, while the Indians leaped after them and speared them with their lances. Only some 100 men and three boats made their escape. In the following month, on August 9, the remainder of the regiment, only 301 men, were captured and paroled at the end of the siege of Fort William Henry, under condition of not serving again during 18 months. After the fall of Fort William Henry, New Jersey contributed 1,000 militia who marched to reinforce the British army while another 3,000 New Jersey militia were ready to march if it should be necessary.
In the spring of 1758, the regiment was reformed under Colonel John Johnson, officially counting 1,000 men. In July, this new regiment took part in the expedition against Carillon (present-day Ticonderoga). On July 5, they were embarked at the head of Lake George. On July 6, at daybreak, the British flotilla reached the narrow channel leading into Lake Champlain near Fort Carillon and disembarkation began at 9:00 a.m.. On July 8, they fought in the disastrous Battle of Carillon. At daybreak on July 9, the British army re-embarked and retreated to the head of the lake where it reoccupied the camp it had left a few days before.
The New Jersey Regiment was the only Provincial Regiment to have a Grenadier Company.