I was reviewing some of my records of flight instructor wings and ran across a picture of instructor Merle Phillips Polhemus who was located at Victory Field in Vernon, Texas. HIs hat badge and lapel wings are made by A.E. Company. I assume his instructor wings were made by them also. I only have photocopies of these items but they may have some interest to the members of the Forum.
Victory Field Flight Instructor Wings WWII
Posted 30 November 2015 - 12:36 PM
Wonder if he's related to William Polhemus, the Air Force navigator who was crew on a B-58 for a world's speed record from Washington to Paris in 1961. He was also the navigator on Ann Pellegreno's flight in 1967 that retraced Amelia Earhart's route.
Posted 30 November 2015 - 01:57 PM
Hey General-Lucas, thank you for posting. These early contract flight school insignia and patches make me drool as a collector!
I believe the letter "R" seen in the upper portion of the cap piece would identify it as an early 1941 to 1942 insignia, when Ritchey Flying Service ran the school. According to the book "Two Hundred Thousand Flyers" by Willard Wiener, the U.S. Army handed the school over to Colonel Dan Hunter in December 1942 and it was then operated by Hunter Flying Service, Victory Field...
Posted 30 November 2015 - 07:02 PM
Happen to be fortunate enough to have several items from Victory Field in my collection. Rusty Wings is correct, the school was originally Ritchey Flying Service, opened 14 July 1941. After December 1942, Colonel Dan Hunter operated the school as Hunter Flying Service. The school closed 4 August 1944. Of interest, Hunter also operated a Pre-flight Glider School at Hamilton, Texas (23rd AAF GTD).
Examples of insignia and patches follow:
Posted 30 November 2015 - 07:04 PM
The following picture is of a Victory Field patch I am aware of, and would very much like to add it to my Contract Flying / Pilot Training collection.
I would also like to obtain examples of the pilot wings and collar devices.
Posted 02 December 2015 - 07:22 PM
I would really love to get one of those sets! They are supper nice.
Posted 13 September 2017 - 06:04 PM
This Victory Field wing is actually a tie-clip..... Bought it on eBay some years ago without knowing anything about it at the time.
Posted 14 September 2017 - 05:22 PM
It is not a Victory field but Hunter Flying Service instructor wing. You can find them in both tie clasp and pin back versions.
Posted 14 September 2017 - 05:57 PM
I don't know much about these. Why does this pin of mine have that same dot-dot-dot-dash morse code just like the other Victory field stuff? And where was the Hunter Flying Service located? Thanks...astra44
Posted 15 September 2017 - 10:57 AM
I guess you could be right and it is a Victory Field instructor wing. From Wikipedia:Victory Field, Vernon, Texas 317th Flying Training Detachment Operated by: Hunter Flying Service and Richey Flying Service. Opened: December 1941, Closed: August 1944 (PT-19) Controlled five auxiliary airfields But I think the wing itself is specifically for Hunter Flying Service.
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