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Remembered Today:

RAF in Russia 1919


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I just did a quick search for an MIC for W R Moscrip, as his commissioning in July 1918 and subsequent service made me wonder if he made it to the Western front at all, and what his entitlement would be if sent to Russia (whether the BWM & Victory, or just the BWM). I cannot find any sign of an MIC for him.

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  • 3 years later...

Has anyone by any chance come across anything on my Grandfather, Fl. Lt. James Frederick Davison, who was an observer with 3 squadron on the Southern Russian Mission? Or some ideas where I can look? Thanks

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  • 1 year later...
On 1/14/2011 at 02:26, corisande said:

Again, for what its worth, I transcribed a list of RAF men in Bereznik given By Ira Jones in his book "An airfighter's scrapbook" Jones was with Bowman's no 3 Squadron, and therefore reflects the men in that squadron more than Carr's

Archangel Pilots named by Jones -

Guy Carter

Geoffrey "Beery" Bowman

Frankie O "Mongoose" Soden

Oliver C Bryson

R L Chidlaw-Roberts

Roddy Waugh




Scramblin (Canadian)



W R Moscrip


"Fluffy" White





C R W Knight (killed on 21 Jun, CWGC)

Bernard (French-Canadian) (killed or captured)

Dugald D McDougall (killed 25 Aug, CWGC)

D'Arcy-Levy (killed 10 Aug, CWGC)

Archangel Observers - Neill, Bowen, Pettigrew, Davies, Micky Byrne,

Pilot disembarked at Murmansk - Alan Garrard VC, W H "Porky" Park, C A Bouchier

Hi, I was wondering in what context does Ira Jones mention ' Archangel Observer Pettigrew.' I don't have a copy of this book and would be keen to know as I'm scratching around for info on Gordon Pettigrew's Russian involvement. I've got a photograph of HMS Pegasus unloading a floatplane, snapshot of him with two other airmen and a picture of refugees at Archangel, but little else to go on.

Is there a good book on this episode or C&C article?

Many thanks in advance.


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Regarding the RAF in South Russia, two online articles

"Over the Balkans and South Russia", the latter in 1919. Flight Global article January 10, 1924 about the book of the same name by H A Jones published 1923 (and in a later reprint) about No. 47 Squadron, RAF. flightglobal.com


"Biplane Battle: Flying Against the Bolsheviks During Russia’s Civil War" by Derek O'Connor. historynet.com. Originally published in the September 2007 issue of Aviation History Magazine. Four Sopwith Camels of B Flight, No. 47 Squadron, Royal Air Force,




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  • 2 weeks later...

There were six RAF squadrons that served in North Russia.


At Murmansk there was "Pigeon" Flight which flew out of the airfield cut out of the forest at Lumbushi north of Lake Onega and "Duck" Flight which flew seaplanes from the anchorage at Medvyeja-Gora on the northern shore of Lake Onega.


At Archangel the squadron's were locally numbered:


No. 1 (Slavo-British Aviation Corps) Squadron, based at Bereznik aerodrome

No. 2 (Obozerskaya) Squadron, Archangel-Vologda Railway Front

No. 3 (Bereznik) Squadron, Dvina River Force

No. 4 (Pinega) Squadron, Pinega River


Carr's DFC was for a strafing mission against a Red Air Force airfield on the Pinega Front.


No. 1 (Slavo-British Aviation Corps) Squadron was commanded by Russia's highest scoring WW1 ace Alexander Kazakov who died on 1st August 1919 when he deliberately flew his Sopwith Camel into the airfield at Bereznik.


The SBAC operated on an inter-mixed basis with British aircrew, for example an SBAC pilot and RAF observer or vice-versa.


The "Slavo-British Legion" was the army equivalent to the SBAC. The SBL was commanded by a British officer with some British Company and Platoon commanders and a sprinkling of SBL Russian officers in the same appointments.


Two companies of the SBL mutinied on 7th July 1919 and murdered five British officers before going over to the Bolsheviks. The SBAC were a separate unit and not involved in any mutinies.


I have a group photograph of aircrew of the Slavo-British Aviation Corps in my book: http://www.helion.co.uk/churchill-s-secret-war-with-lenin-british-and-commonwealth-military-intervention-in-the-russian-civil-war-1918-20.html


The SBAC officers wore British uniform with Imperial Russian Air Service badges and shoulder boards. Many received British awards for service in North Russia, Kazakov himself wore ribbons of the DSO, DFC and MC.



Edited by wrightdw
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