Posted 01 April 2010 - 09:09 PM
Posted 01 April 2010 - 09:14 PM
Posted 01 April 2010 - 09:25 PM
Posted 01 April 2010 - 09:27 PM
Posted 01 April 2010 - 09:29 PM
Posted 02 April 2010 - 06:17 AM
This patch is from the Wilson-Bonfils Flying School, Chickasha OK. It was a contract primary school from 1941-1945. They also may have done some training at a different airfield somewhere in Kansas. PT-19s and PT-17s were the training aircraft.
Edited by DMD, 02 April 2010 - 06:18 AM.
Posted 02 April 2010 - 06:35 AM
I sent a photo to a guy who ran an annual reunion for the graduates, looks like 2009 was the final one because of the age of the remaining few. He sent this photo along with this reply:
"This a good copy, but if you notice on the original picture attached, it has AAF, Primary and Chickasha Field on the lower portion. They were also made of leather, not cloth as this one seems to be.
It may have been made at the school, but is not the official one."
Posted 02 April 2010 - 09:43 AM
I had the chance to get to know a gentleman who was a civilian instructor during the early part of the war. He had some very interesting stories about being an instructor, both how we came to be training pilots in the first place and his efforts to "get into the war" as he said. I will try to get some transcripts of his correspondence later. Sadly, his wife tossed out most of his "stuff" in the 70's and the only things he had left were some xerox copies of old photographs.
On another note, those of you who are interested, should be aware of some of the literature and may find it interesting to look into this field even closer. The two main references are these two books.
To Fill the Skies with Pilots: The Civilian Pilot Training Program, 1939-1946. By Dominick Pisano,
The putt-putt air force the story of the Civilian Pilot Training Program and the War Training Service (1939-1944)
by Catherine Patricia O'Malley Strickland
I have heard rumors that John Cook (perhaps the leading expert on civilian instructor wings and patches) is writing or preparing an book on this field as well. However, I have been hearing about this book for many years and still don't know if it is actually going to be published or not.
And if you are still interested, I recommend this really great webpage (which also contains additional references):
To me, the interesting thing about the civilian flight schools is that they cover so much history. I'll add just a few items to this thread to keep it going.
First, another family of the "generic" civilian flight instructor wings. The cloth one is rather rare, because they do not seem to have been very popular compared to the metal wings and cap badges.
Also, is a photo of these wings being worn by a flight instructor.
Edited by pfrost, 02 April 2010 - 09:58 AM.
Posted 02 April 2010 - 09:45 AM
Edited by pfrost, 02 April 2010 - 09:46 AM.
Posted 02 April 2010 - 09:49 AM
The other wing is likely a civilian instructor wing for someone who was at Robin's field. It is made out of a converted AAF cadet cap badge. I have had some argue that they think this is a sweetheart item, but I doubt it myself.
Posted 03 April 2010 - 08:28 AM
DMD, I think your Chickasha Chick embroidered patch is spot-on and would have been worn on the left shoulder of the uniform shirt. I've not seen a shirt-size Chickasha patch with the name of the flight school embroidered at the bottom. The larger leather patch (post #59) would have been worn on A-2 style leather jacket.
Patrick, thank you for your kind words, but in reality my modest collection is "small potatoes" compared to many, many other dedicated collectors. I'm shadowed by the terrific collections and stockpiles of knowledge from people like John Cook, Ed Anderson, Walter Dudgeon, Bob Chatt, Ron Burkey, Stanley Baumwald, Russ Huff, Gregg Parlin and many others.
This new thread is off to a good start. I hope we can soon lure others into posting their CAA-WTS insignia as well.
Posted 03 April 2010 - 08:47 AM
Posted 03 April 2010 - 08:55 AM
Posted 03 April 2010 - 09:04 AM
Posted 03 April 2010 - 09:19 AM
Posted 03 April 2010 - 09:25 AM
Posted 03 April 2010 - 05:38 PM
G-E-E! This is one thread that keeps getting better and better with each new day.
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