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 WWI & Early Aviation Memorials NJ and Philadelphia Emilio Carranza & Julian Biddle among others

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Kyushu J7W


Posts : 192
Join date : 2017-02-18
Location : East Coast USA

PostSubject: WWI & Early Aviation Memorials NJ and Philadelphia Emilio Carranza & Julian Biddle among others    Sun Feb 19 2017, 09:58

I posted this elsewhere some 5 years ago. I'm sure the UK and France has many monuments to pre WWII air crew but we seem to have few that I can find. If anyone knows of others please post them here .

Went into Philly with my son and showed him this memorial to WWI pilots ..... it has been refurbished and a memorial wall and lighting surrounds it. Nicely done but I wonder if there are others around the country and in the UK .....anyone know of any? Post the pictures here. A few pilots are listed but some information has degraded over time. The sphere is inscribed with the Latin names of constellations and planets) (Base, front AERO/MEMORIAL/WORLD WAR I/1917-1918 (Base, front JULIAN BIDDLE/HOWARD FOULKE DAY/(...transcription illegible) ON DOWNS, JR./ (...transcription illegible) CHRISTIAN CLANZ/WILLIAM BESSE KOEN/(...transcription illegible) TON WOODWARD (A plaque with the insignia of the Fairmount Park Art Association appears on the base.)"
I found a photo of Biddle and a bit about him. Still researching the others.


In the summer of 1916 he received his Pilot's license at Essington. He was accepted for enlistment in the Foreign Legion, and was sent to the French Military Aviation School at Avord, where he received his brevet and graduated in a very short time. He was then sent to Pau for acrobatics, and on the thirty-first of July he was ordered to Plessis-Belleville for assignment as a battle pilot. On the seventh of August he was sent to Souilly, and afterwards to Dunkirk, where he was assigned to Escadrille Number 73, Groupe de Combat Number 12. On the eighteenth of August, while he was on a practice flight, his plane fell into the North Sea, from an unknown cause. Eight days later his body was washed ashore at Egmond-aan-Zee, North Holland, where the civil authorities reported that it appeared torn by shot. He was buried in the village churchyard at this place. Biddle appears to have been the first American who volunteered after the United States entered the war to be killed at the front. In January, 1918, he was awarded the Aero Club of America medal "for valor and distinguished services"; and he also received the ribbon of the Lafayette Flying Corps. His citation is in the Journal Officiel of July the seventh, 1919.

Biddle's letters from France indicate wide powers of observation, and draw unusually clear pictures of the feverish action and changing circumstances of Paris during the trying months of hurry and distress. He does not conceal the dangers of his task, but thereby proves his superiority to them; and his interest and enthusiasm for his work pervade everything that he writes. Throughout these letters run also the self-reliance and frankness which are so familiar to his friends, whether in facing strange situations or applying himself to his own training. He was able to enjoy whatever social distractions circumstances offered, and dwells with great interest on the chance meetings with friends and fellow-soldiers from home.

Julian Biddle was conspicuous among his schoolmates at St. Mark's for his two characteristics of fearlessness and determination. He, like Mandell, was unaffected by popular opinion as such: he saw clearly beyond the external shows of school spirit and loyalty, and worked hard and impersonally to justify them.

Difficulties meant nothing to him, and whatever opposition he encountered in his straightforward course not only failed to turn him, but did not even disturb him. Such strength of purpose might have been perplexing if it had ever been used capriciously; but it was not. He seems to have had from his early boyhood a solid basis of right thinking, entirely detached from considerations of self, and dedicated to pure principle. When this loyalty was transferred, or rather enlarged, to embrace the duty to his country, it flowered into extraordinary activity and practical efficiency. Five hours of flying won him his Pilot's license, and upon arriving at the flying school at Avord he received his commission in record time. The exact circumstances of his death are not known; but those who know him know that whatever they were, he encountered them as he had encountered everything in his brave life, without a disturbing thought or an instant's hesitation. In his will he showed his love and devotion to his School by leaving to her everything that he had earned in his business since his graduation; but in his life he left St. Mark's far more than money can ever buy: an example of clean loyalty, service, and unfailing sincerity and love.

Also a bit from the Fairmount park commission web site about the memorial.

To commemorate aviators who died in World War I, sculptor Paul Manship created an open bronze sphere that suggests the heavens and the earth, with intricate intertwined forms evoking the signs of the zodiac.
This is an absolutely beautiful memorial to the aviators of Pennsylvania killed in World War I. Please pay particular attention to the wall surrounding the immediate area of the memorial. It is a large sculpture. Its height is approximately 96 inches, the sphere has a diameter of 6 ft. and its base is approximately 116 inches. Paul Manship (1885-1966) was the sculptor and Joseph Patterson Sims (born in 1890) was the architect. The sculpture is made of bronze and limestone or possible granite.
From the sign at the memorial: "Shaped like a celestial sphere, this gilded bronze sculpture is dedicated to Pennsylvania aviators who died in World War I. The outer structure suggests an astronomical instrument, and the figures illustrate signs of the zodiac. Sculptor Paul Manship also created Duck Girl in Rittenhouse Square and Prometheus at New York's Rockefeller Center
First proposed during World War I by the Aero Club of Pennsylvania, the memorial was commissioned by the Fairmount Park Art Association. It was donated to the City of Philadelphia in 1950

Ty and I went out to the Wharton forest and on a little traveled road that ends up turning into a gravel road, eventually we found the memorial to Emilio Carranza. This is an example of often missing what is in your own back yard. You can tell what a desolate place it would have been in 1928. A few farm families in the Pinelands at best. Knowing now about the memorial Ty and I may go there this year for the ceremony.

Captain Emilio Carranza Rodríguez (December 9, 1905 – July 12, 1928) was a noted Mexican aviator and national hero, nicknamed the "Lindbergh of Mexico". He was killed while returning from a historic goodwill flight from Mexico City to the United States.

A 12 ft (3.6 m) monument in the Wharton State Forest in Tabernacle Township, New Jersey marks the site of his crash 39°46′38.6″N 74°37′56.6″W. The monument, installed with funds donated by Mexican schoolchildren, depicts a falling eagle of Aztec design. Each year in July, on the Saturday nearest the anniversary of his crash (second Saturday in July) at 1:00 p.m. he is honored at the monument site by members of the American Legion Medford post 526 accompanied by an entourage from the Mexican consulates in New York City and Philadelphia.

The donated monolith was created with each side representing a symbol of Carranza and his love of aviation. The monument was funded by the children of Mexico who saved their coins to create this obelisk-looking statue. The stones for the monument were quarried from granite mined near his home and each block represented a different Mexican State.

Constructed in the form of a giant pylon, with squared tapered sided, the image of an Aztec eagle is carved on one side. On the other side, there is an arrow, pointing skyward. Another side has an inscription. It shows some deterioration and some letters in the message are missing. The message states "Messenger of Peace... The people of Mexico Hope that your high ideals will be realized... Homage of the children of Mexico to the aviator captain Emilio Carranza who died tragically on July 13, 1928 in his good will flight". On the front side, below the eagle there are embedded footprints which represent the famed aviator's final walk on the planet.

Two men were charged in connection to the monument vandalization which was spray-painted in May 2005 with "white power" and "Die all Wetbacks". There was also a swastika. The restoration work was performed by T. Scott Kreilick, whose Pennsylvania-based conservation company have also restored headstones at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and New York City's botanical garden.

If you score a victory but lose your wingman, you lost the battle.
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