Over several years (2000–2006) Jim Graham (1stFG –71stFS, Nov. 44 to May 45), visited the National Archives in College Park, MD to make direct copies of the mission reports prepared by the 1st FG from 1942 through 1945 during WWII. Over the years following the acquisition of the printed mission reports, Jim reviewed the several thousand pages of reports to catalog them in a 1st FG MISSION LOG. The LOG serves as an index to the mission reports organized by Month/Year to provide a convenient insight into the character of each mission.
The LOG lists the following for each mission: MISSION NUMBER: The numbering system started in mid 1943 and was later re-adjusted several times, so the real significance of the mission #’s is lost except to give a relative order. MISSION DATE: Each mission report was accurately dated, and there were often multiple missions per day. SQDN --A/C: Mission reporting went through several phases with regard to identification of the squadron A/C involved. In some cases, the missions were reported per squadron, others were reported only as per the 1st FG. Where possible the A/C per squadron are identified. TARGET --_ AREA: Each of the various Intelligence Officers that produced the mission reports had a varied way of identifying the mission target or objective, thus the identity of the intended mission target, objective or evolution is given a short summary by the logger. MISSION --TYPE: The categories of mission type were arbitrarily picked before the logging began. The variations in mission objective didn’t always fit accurately, and the logger’s selection of category was somewhat judgmental, but the mission character is reasonably depicted. BE = Bomber Escort PE = Photo Escort TC = Top Cover ( As in cover for a convoy on the surface ) DB = Dive Bombing ST = Strafing AR = Armed Recon AB = Aerial/Altitude Bombing A/C LOSSES: The intent was to log the a/c lost by squadron on each mission. The variability in mission reporting and the multitude of reasons for a/c to not return on time made this logging feature difficult and only occasionally achieved. (untitled column) : Added notation to characterize the mission.
Click on the buttons below to see the mission reports by year: