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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Confirmation of Pilot/Aircraft on 42 Sqn.


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Hi All

In some paperwork I copied from the National Archives (AIR 1/918/204/5/878), reference an experiment carried out relating to aeroplanes co-operating with artillery at night, the pilot involved is Capt. R A Archer in BE.2e '7059' on the night of 30 Sept./1 Oct. 1916. I believe he was on 42 Sqn. at the time but he does not mention his squadron. He does mention his aerodrome as being 'La Gorgue', which is where 42 Sqn. was based at this time, according to Jefford's book 'RAF Squadrons'. Trevor Henshaw also mentions a R A Archer twice in TSTB, first on 10th Sept. 1915 flying BE.2cs with 6 Sqn. as a Lt. and as a Capt. flying RE.8s with 42 Sqn. on the 9th April 1918.

I believe the evidence indicates that he was with 42 Sqn. when undertaking this experiment but if anyone can confirm that he and/or the aircraft was on the strength of the squadron at the time it would be confirmation.

many thanks


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Hi Mike,

I have 7059 on strength with 42 Squadron from when they were working up at Filton, in August 1916, right through until it went off squadron strength in April 1917. I therefore strongly suspect your assumption about 42 Sqn is correct!

Best Regards,


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Hi Trevor

Thanks for that, it is looking good for 42 Sqn. unless anyone has Archer on strength elsewhere and is only attached. My money on him being on strength. It is interesting to see that he was around quite some time from 1915 to early 1918 and also a captain from Sept. 1916 to April 1918 at least.


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