Newspaper Page Text
'I' I I .
Will American Planes and Men Cast the Balance j. Which Will Win the War?- What Uncle Sam i Is Doing - The Building of Machines ; and the Training of Aviators. . J; Copyright, 1917. by The International Syndicate. IN TT FORM the positive belief that V I American aviators will break Into I the skylino of Germany llko birds Bf 1 In migration," said Governor j James M. Cox, of Ohio, In a recent ad- dress. "Their purpose will not bo I. killing of women and children, nor of ; wreaking human slaughter In any i form; but tho American blrdmen will ? reach Essen and Kiel and destroy not only tho navy of Germany but' also , every institution which continues tho menaco of Prussian Imperialism." Ali-craft Production Board at Work. The United States Government has ; charged tho Aircraft Production , , Board of tho Council of National Do- ' fenso with tho duty of developing Jn- ! dustrlal resources of supply for tho , building of airplanes, and this board Is confident that it is entirely possible for the United States to turn out in : quantity airplanes and alrplano cn- i glnes suitable for uso at the front. Tho plans of aviation equipment for ! effectual and decisive effort In tho war ; outlined by this board call for an ap propriation of about $600,000,000. , Tho Aircraft Production Board say that it Is not possible to stato exact ly how many airplanes tho Govern ment will build within the year ac cording to this program, but the pos sibilities are estimated at between 25. 000 and 35,000 airplanes and engines in tlmo for next summer's offensive, and thi3 number may be augmented if the exigencies of the situation demand it Airplanes, Men and Mechanics Needed In addition to its aircraft America must train at least 10,000 aviators for the front by next spring. If Con gress grants sufficient money more than that number will bo available. To effect the balance on tho winning side America must not only supply air planes with men sufficient to man them, but sho must also supply a con stant stream of aviators and mechan ics to tho European battlefields. Tho members of tho Aircraft Pro duction Board of tho Council of Na tional Defense who are mainly re- sponsiblo for this great war measuro are: Howard E. Coffin, chairman, vice-president of tho Hudson Motor Company, whose vision and enthus iasm are largely responsible for tho now development; Brigadier General Georgo O. Squier, Chief Signal. OfTicer, U. S. A.; Hear Admiral David W. Taylor, Bureau of Construction; S. D. Waldon, ex-vlcc-prcsidcnt of tho Packard Motor Car Co.; E.' A. Deeds, former general manager of tho Na tional Cash Register Co., later with the Dayton Engineering Laboratory Company, and R. L. Montgomery, senior member of tho Philadelphia banking firm of Montgomery, Clothier and Tyler, who serves as financial and business adviser of the board. The Aircraft Production Board Is acting In closest co-operation with tho War and Navy Departments, and es pecially with the recently created Joint Army and Navy Board on De sign and Specifications, which has been intrusted by tho Secretaries of the two branches of the service with discretion on all questions of design and specifications In all forms of mili tary aircraft, except dirigibles. A New Standardized Engine Is Desired Tho suggestion that tho United States turn out tens of thousands of alrplano engines within the next year or eighteen months may seem vision ary, If not Impossible to those who aro familiar with tho airplane problem. Only a few firms in this country have been building machines and thoso have been training planes. It Is a very large undertaking to convert to a new task the Industry of a great country, particularly a task as highly specialized as that of building air planes. The Aircraft Production Board is, however, composed of men of fore sight and practical purposo and their program is based on tested founda tions. In building airplanes the en gine is tho chief problem, and engi neers aro now at work on a new typo of standardized engine on which tho board bases its hope for quantity pro duction. It is this engine Which will be turned ovor to American Industry to build with directions to turn all- its enthusiasm and energy to the task of producing It by thousands. America to Contribute Heavy Typo Machines. The building of tho heavier types of airplanes used In bombing and re connaisance, on .which tho United Spates will concentrate to form the great body of tho. allied air fleets, to gother with tho task of oulldlng train ing machines In quantities, will leave I tho British and French manufactur ers free to construct more of the very fast and highly specialized types of light fighters which thoy havo bocomo experienced in building. Tho United States may later enter this portion of the production field but for tho pres ent the immediate demand for quan tity manufacture places tho chief em phasis on tho heavier types as the chief contribution of this country. Automobile plants are to be exten sively called upon, and for special if if tgg 1 1 I . 1 JjjJ&yG? I History Traces the Use of i I Carrier figeons To the ; I- ; Time ofPharoah First RealValuelnWarWas Shown At the Siege of, : Paris Great Distances ; Covered, One Record of ) 4,200 Miles. ; Copyright. 1017. by The International j Syndicate. SINCE tho days of Pharoah the carrier pigeon has played an Important part in warfare. De spito tho perfection of tho wired W and wireless telegraph and telephone, V wig-wagging and other means of j transmitting messages from head quarters to flcld commanders, nothing has yet been invented, unless it is tho aeroplane, that makes these means of communication absolutely safo from I prying eyes and ears. Therefore, now j as heretofore, the crmics of the world i rely upon tho carrier pigeon as tin J j safest and surest means of communl 'A I cation whoro absolute secrecy is os i sentlal. I While other nations of tho world, j ! especial. Gormany, Italy'and Prance. I havo devoted years of careful study i to the broedlng and training of horn i 1 ing pigeons, It has only been reccnt r ly that tho United States deemed it necessary to look for theso winged ; messengers to accompany our various expeditionary forces to France. There arc soveral cotes of theso swift and In telligent birds now under Army juris diction, and already many of theso pigeons havo been transported across seas. Tho best known of theso cotes is at Lansdownc, Pa., where that well known Philadelphia sportsman, An thony J Drcxol Blddlc, now a Captain In tho United States Marino Corps, is devoting much tlmo to supervising tho training of the birds. " Record Breakers In Flock. In this coto are many birds that hold records for speed and distance flights. Charles Jones, presldont of tho National Carrier Pigeon Associa tion, has taken a keen Interest In tho new army flock and turned over two of his record breaking birds, "Undo Sam" and "Botty. "Uncle Sam" still holds the record for an over sea flight of 500 miles, while "Betty's" 600-inllo straightaway flight never has been equalled. It is generally conceded that tho safest way to conceal a message to be borno by a carrier pigeon is to en fold It in a little tube that is tuckod beneath tho bird's wing. Sometimes tho noto is tied to its leg, or about Its neck, but the tubo is moro popu lar. When a homing pigeon is re leased for its home flight It generally soars to a tremendous altitude in order to get its bearings. When It has established its sense of direction it darts away in straight flight to Its goal, or cote. As tho bird flies bo swiftly and at such a great altitude tho chances of Its being shot by an enemy sharpshooter Is romoto In ths extreme and for this reason tho chances for Its bringing homo tho messago with trhlch it was entrusted aro excellent Birds Used By Pershinp:. Uncle Sam's birds will bo exten sively used onco tho American "Sam- A mies" get Into action and no doubt General Pershing and his staff al ready havo had occasion to uso them. In the American coto are birds that are tho progeny of "Simny.JJm." one of the most noted homing birds In the world. Jim electrified the homing fanciers of tho world a few years ago by a flight from Rio dc Janoiro to Jeannctte, Pa a distance of 4,200 miles. It was tho flrst time a bird of its kind ever winged Us way from a point south of tho Equator. Jim was liberated at Rio on May S, 1913. Twenty-four hours afterwards ht re turned to tho point of liberation, cir cled about the cote for an hour or so land then headed due north. Whether it was tho intenso heat, or tho great distance, most of which was ovor strange and unfamiliar surroundings abounding In denso tropical foliage, none knows, but in any event Sunny Jim did not return to this Pennsyl vania cote until twenty-four days after his liberation in the tropics. Bu' tho all important point is, ho arrived. Whereas tho natural instinct of tho carrier pigeon is to seek his cote the moment ho is liberated at some dis tant point, nevertheless tho armies of tho worid aro not relying on in stinct alone. Theso birds aro train ed Just as diligently and assiduously as any other part of the wonderful units that aro being so masterfully weldod Into a perfect war machine. The training is only accomplished af tor weeks and months of patient effort and now that tho time has arrived for our army to tako its placo in tho foreign battio line, great faith Is ho ling pinned to tho feathered tribe that is being transported across tho seas. Dates Back to Pliaroah. The part tho homing pigeons played in the affairs of the world as previous ly stated, dates back to tho days when Pharoah's navigators wero sailing to Egypt and released these homing birds to let those at homo know tho dato of their expected return. In tho seventh century, history tells us, the Arabs maintained a regular pigeon posu Tho burdens of tho Dutch dur ing tho sicgo of Leyden, wore mate rially lightened by tho swift, flying pigeons which conveyed their mes sages and kept the lines of communi cation open and safe. Tho real valuo of tho homing pig eon In war was best demonstrated during tho slego of Paris in the Franco-Prussian war, Just forty-four, years ago. In tho course of this slego seventy-four balloons were sent aloft all frolghtcd with homing pigeons which wero destined for Tours and other points. It is said that upwards of 800 pigeons wero sont from tho Prov inces to Paris during the slego and that tho momentous messages they conveyed would make a library of 500 volumes. It was Just prior to tho siege that Barreswill and Dragon per fected a process of mlcrophotography by which two to three thousand letters could bo photographed on a film two Inches long by an inch and a half wide. By placing tho negative or positives In a storeopticon and throw ing them on a screen, tho messages Could easily bo read. More than 40, 000 such messages wero sont whllo tho slego lasted. Pigeon Post For Berlin. Immediately after signing tho treaty of peace Bismarck, realizing tho importanco of a plgoon post In war times, issued orders for estab lishing cotes of tho best birds obtain able In Berlin. Theso were main- ' . - sJs. :A ; ' t parts cash register, sewing machlno and typewriter plants, wood-working and other manufacturing institutions will each be used in various ways through sub-contracts from tho ongino manufacturers. Standardization Is Essential. "Tho whole answer to tho problem before ua li standardization," said tho Council of National Dofonso in a re cent statement, "The American de velopment of the, airplane motor will be a standarlzed motor. If necessary parts exactly alike can bo turned out in quantity in one factory and shipped to a different placo to bo assomblcd." To prepare rrion for aviation war service nine training flolds, capable of turning out 300 aviators every four months have already been authorized by tho Government and tho now bill with Its larger financial provision now in Congress will provide for a total of twenty-four. Four of tho nine al ready authorized are nearlng comple tion at this writing and three of them will bo in use beforo tho appearance of this article. Tho men who aro to fill theso fields are at this moment tak ing preliminary training in six of tho country's leading engineering schools, and from theso and others to be es tablished later a constant stream of recruits will occupy tho big aviation fields. Tho six educational establishments which are supplying preliminary mili tary aeronautical instruction to tho aviation recruits arc Cornell Unlver- H slty; Massachusetts Institute of Tech- nology, and the Universities of Ohio, Illinois, Texas and California. Tho course includes tho construction, care and rigging of aeronautical engines: theory of flight including tho construe- fl tlon, caro and rigging of aeroplanes; cross country and general flying, in- eluding meteorology, astronomy, pho- tography and Instruments, aerial ob- ' scrvatlon, reconnaissance, gunnery, Including the caro and operation of machlno guns; bombs and bombing; signalling and wireless, and military IH regulations. Candidates for aviation service must be graduates in this course, which la taken In eight weeks, beforo they are promoted to the flying fields. The four fields ready for occupation aro located at Dayton, Ohio; Rantoul, and Belle vllle, Illinois; and Mount Clemens. Michigan. Tho course In practical flying is four months. The standard aviation flcld Is approximately ono mllo square and provides accommoda tlon for two squadrons of 150 stu dents each with tho necessary officers and enlisted men. Tho field at Day ton, Ohio, provides for four squad- IH &-cr 20,000 Trained Aviators Each Year. IH The Aircraft Production Board cal eulates that with the authorization of twenty-four aviation flolds, each train ing 300 students in four months, tho United States should be able to turn out approximately 21,000 trained -mil-ltary aviators a year after the system IH Is put completely Into effect. In anticipation of the transfer of the new airmen to tho foreign fields tho United States Government is now building in France a duplicate of the American standard two-squadron field. As the men leave tho American fields at the close of their four-months' training they will proceed lo Fran" jH On French soil under French Instruct ors and with French machines they will complete their preparations for actual work at the front. - The distinguishing Insignia which the United States Government has adopted for all its military aircraft is a white star with a red center on a circular background of blue. All American airplanes, seaplanes, captive balloons and dirigibles will bear this IH combination of the national colois. IH 1 talncd soleJy for the use of tho army and Germany's army has been using the homing pigeon to a considerable extent ever sinco. By IS 74 thero we:o official pigeon cotes established at Co logne. Metz, Strassburg and Baden. To stlmulato the interest in , broed lng homing pigeons tho Kalsor gave annual prizes for the swiftest and strongest birds and ten years after tho war thero wero ITS private hom ing pigeon societies In Germany own ing a total of 62,24 0 birds, cxcluslvo of thoso In the army cotes. Germany's Interest in the homing pigeon was a stimulus to that In other countries. Italy followed tho ex ample set by France and Germany and her cotes ever since havo been world renowned. Sho now has six teen army lofts, all filled with tho very highest type of birds that brood ers can produce. Russia has five of theso military lofts and this means several thousand birds, to say nothing of the new crop of young birds that annually come on, for tho pigeon is prolific as a breeder. Spain Uas Fine Ixfts. Spain has a magnificent collection of homing pigeons and its official lofts are among tho finest in the world. Its eighteen lofts, all under military su pervision, aro scattored through tho kingdom with a trainod body of sol diers to look after and train tho birds. Portugal,. llko her neighbor, has gono In scientifically for pigeon breeding and uses them extonslvoly for army and sccrot scrvlco purposes. Portu gal has fourteon lofts; Sweden and Denmark flvo each. Holland has no But all said and dono France leadB tho world In tho utilization of tho carrlor pigeon. Thero aro upwards of 100,000 birds in the hands of skilled breeders and trainers throughout that Republic, all of which aro subject to bo commandeored by tho government at an Instant's notice. As It Is France, learning tho. value of theso winged mossengers in the Franco-Prussian war, now has twenty-eight military pigeon lofts, most of them along tho eastern boundary in tho vicinity of tho battle front- There are 100 birds in each of tnese lofts. French scientists after a series of exhaustlvo experiments have decided that tho homing pigeon relics upon tho jH sense of smell, rather than that of sight, to find its way home. This do clslon was reached after testing every sense theso birds aro endowed with. Tho senses of sight, hearing and smell wero all deadened In turn. First tho birds wero turned looso far from home and blindfolded. They arrived , at their cote according to schedule. Then their ears wore scaled with wax , fM and still they arrlvod. But when their ( nostrils were closed with wax tho birds becamo bewildered and helpless JM and floundered around, soon refusing to fly at all. Tho scientist's cxplana- IH tlon is that each locality has its indl vidual odor for tho homing pigeon, and by circling aloft the pigeon final ly gets into tho air current frolghted with tho odor of tho pigeon's home lo callty and by following this curront , ho arrives ultimately at his cote. 230 Miles In Five Hours. j IH A flight of 250 miles in from flvo to soven hours is regarded as an ordi- nary feat for a pigeon. A fow can make 500 or 600 miles In tho satao time. Somo of tho best records over attained wero hung up by American birds. A bird namod Nym, owned jH and bred by J. R. Husson of Cresson. Pa., flew from Now York City to Cresson, a distance of 243 miles, in JH 337 minutes. That was away back in 1SS0. The bird's avcrago speod wa3 at tho rato of a mllo in 5S V seconds. In a flight from New York to Stouben- jH vllle, Ohio, or a dlstanco of 375 miles, San Francisco, owned by a Hobokon. N. J., man maintained an avcrago of fifty miles an hour. A record which long stood was that from Montgomory, Ala., to Fall River, Mass.. 1040 mllos, made by Alabama, a noted bird. Tho pigeon was in his loft ten days after liberation. IH