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Marine Flyer In France — The Diary Of Captain Alfred A. Cunningham, November 1917 - January 1918

Length: 41 pages1 hour


During November and December 1917, Captain Alfred A. Cunningham, the first Marine Corps aviator, travelling under orders from Major General Commandant George Barnett, toured the battlefronts and flying fields of France to observe Allied air operations and training.
The diary, kept in tiny, neat handwriting in a small pocket notebook, begins on 3 November 1917 with Cunningham’s sailing from New York on board the S. S. St. Paul. After a description of a rough winter passage through the North Atlantic U-boat zone, the entries record the confusion, inconveniences, and hardships of wartime London and Paris and contain repeated expressions of homesickness, along with sometimes acid comment on the French people and culture. His tour of British and French airfields culminated with his flying a number of the different aircraft then in service, even flying himself with French airmen on combat missions in December 1917.

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