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US and British Officers look out for the return of B-17 Flying Fortresses from the top of the Control Tower at Grafton Underwood after the 8th Air Force's first heavy bomber raid on 17 August 1942, over the Marshalling Yards at Rouen.

General Carl A Spaatz stands to the left of the ladder, Beirne Lay behind the guide rope and Fred Castle on the near corner. Many other officers from 8th Air Force Bomber Command are also present.

Image stamped on reverse: 'Photo Supplied Photopress Central.' [stamp], 'Passed for publication 18 Aug 1942.' [stamp], 'USA (BRI) CCC.' [written annotation] and '216036.' [Censor no.]

Printed caption on reverse: 'Picture shows: Aerodrome Personnel on the Control Tower watching for the return of the planes from the raid.' Handwritten caption on reverse: 'USAAF 1, 17/8/42 A.'

IWM catalogue record

This contains information written on the back of the original print and some of it may be inaccurate.

Personnel of the 97th Bomb Group look out for the return of B-17 Flying Fortresses from a raid on Rouen, from the top of the Control Tower at Grafton Underwood.

Image stamped on reverse: 'Photo Supplied Photopress Central.' [stamp], 'Passed for publication 18 Aug 1942.' [stamp], 'USA (BRI) CCC.' [written annotation] and '216036.' [Censor no.]

Printed caption on reverse: 'Picture shows: Aerodrome Personnel on the Control Tower watching for the return of the planes from the raid.' Handwritten caption on reverse: 'USAAF 1, 17/8/42 A.'

Connections

Units

  • VIII Bomber Command

    VIII Bomber Command

    Command
    VIII Bomber Command was constituted and activated in 1942. It oversaw heavy bombardment operations until February 1944, when it was redesginated as the 8th Air Force.

People

  • Frederick Castle

    Military | Brigadier General | Commanding Officer; Air Leader, Pilot
    Commanding Officer of 94th Bomb Group at Bury St. Edmunds from 19-Jun-43 to 16-Apr-44. Overseas with General Eaker's staff to organize 8th AF, February 1942. ...

  • Beirne Lay

    Military | Lieutenant Colonel | Group commander
    Beirne Lay assumed command of the 487th Bomb Group at Alamogordo Army Air Base, New Mexico on February 28, 1944, his wife was Philippa Ludwell Lee. ...

  • Carl Spaatz

    Military | General | Commanding General, 8th Air Force
    A few weeks after Pearl Harbor, in January 1942, General Spaatz was assigned as chief of the Army Air Force Combat Command at Washington and promoted to the temporary rank of major general. In May 1942, Spaatz was designated commander of the Eighth Air...

Missions

  • VIII Bomber Command 1

    17 August 1942
    The US 8AF launches its first strategic bombing raid of the war, sending 12 Boeing B-17Es of the 97BG on a strike against the railyards of Sotteville-lès-Rouen, France, while another six fly a diversionary route. The attacking force is split into two...

Locations

  • Grafton Underwood

    Military site : airfield
    Grafton Underwood was built in 1941 by George Wimpey and Co. Ltd. It was the first airfield in England to receive an Eighth Air Force flying unit, when in May 1942 personnel of the 15th Bomb Squadron took up residence. As a satellite airfield for...

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
28 January 2019 16:44:44 Emily Changes to caption, unit associations, person associations and mission associations
Sources

Mission and person associations, and people identified in Freeman, Mighty Eighth War Diary

Image originally identified as 97th Bomb Group, as it was filed with 97BG images by Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
08 September 2014 15:17:38 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

IWM, Roger Freeman Collection

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