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SANKE CARD Nr 363 – PLM WINNER HAUPTMANN OSWALD BOELCKE

SKU: 42-146

$75.00

If there was one man during WW I who revolutionized combat flying it was Oswald Boelcke (1891-1916). It was he who developed the concept of the Jasta. A dedicated combat squadron of single seater attack airplanes. Prior to that single seaters were disbursed among observation squadrons. Boelcke correctly felt that concentrating them n dedicated squadrons would bring concentrated force on the enemy. He also developed what would come to be known as the “Boelcke Dicta.” This was a set of certain rules for fighter pilots that are used to this date by every air force in the world. Today these rules of engagement seem obvious but one must remember this was at a time that was only thirteen years removed from the first flight of an airplane. It was also at a time when just a year earlier that machine guns were mounted on an airplane instead of pilot’s shooting at one another with rifles and pistols. Boelcke would gain fame as being awarded his PLM on the same day as Max Immelmann in January 1916. With the death of Immelmann in the Summer of 1916 Boelcke became the clear-cut leader. He also began assembling his Jasta and among the men that he hand picked was a young pilot who to that point had lead an undistinguished career. His name was Leutnant Freiherr Manfred von Richthofen. Boelcke’s score continued to rise (Forty confirmed victories.) Until a fateful day in late October when he collided with one of his own pilots and was killed. It would take more than six months before his score was exceeded by von Richthofen. His legacy to the German Air Force remains strong today. In this pose he is standing in his classic stance with a hand on his hip. His PLM is at his throat and his 1914 Iron Cross 1st Class and Prussian Army pilot badge are pinned to the left breast of his tunic. This same pose is seen for all three of the officer ranks which he held (Leutnant, Oberleutnant, and Hauptmann). On the reverse we see that this postcard came from the personal archive of Walter Zuerl. Zuerl wrote the book “Pour le Mérite Flyer” in 1938. We have offered this rare book previously and it has detailed chapters on each pilot and is profusely illustrated.

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Description

If there was one man during WW I who revolutionized combat flying it was Oswald Boelcke (1891-1916). It was he who developed the concept of the Jasta. A dedicated combat squadron of single seater attack airplanes. Prior to that single seaters were disbursed among observation squadrons. Boelcke correctly felt that concentrating them n dedicated squadrons would bring concentrated force on the enemy. He also developed what would come to be known as the “Boelcke Dicta.” This was a set of certain rules for fighter pilots that are used to this date by every air force in the world. Today these rules of engagement seem obvious but one must remember this was at a time that was only thirteen years removed from the first flight of an airplane. It was also at a time when just a year earlier that machine guns were mounted on an airplane instead of pilot’s shooting at one another with rifles and pistols. Boelcke would gain fame as being awarded his PLM on the same day as Max Immelmann in January 1916. With the death of Immelmann in the Summer of 1916 Boelcke became the clear-cut leader. He also began assembling his Jasta and among the men that he hand picked was a young pilot who to that point had lead an undistinguished career. His name was Leutnant Freiherr Manfred von Richthofen. Boelcke’s score continued to rise (Forty confirmed victories.) Until a fateful day in late October when he collided with one of his own pilots and was killed. It would take more than six months before his score was exceeded by von Richthofen. His legacy to the German Air Force remains strong today. In this pose he is standing in his classic stance with a hand on his hip. His PLM is at his throat and his 1914 Iron Cross 1st Class and Prussian Army pilot badge are pinned to the left breast of his tunic. This same pose is seen for all three of the officer ranks which he held (Leutnant, Oberleutnant, and Hauptmann). On the reverse we see that this postcard came from the personal archive of Walter Zuerl. Zuerl wrote the book “Pour le Mérite Flyer” in 1938. We have offered this rare book previously and it has detailed chapters on each pilot and is profusely illustrated.

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