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    US Military’s Aerial Reconnaissance Pictures of England During WWII Go Online for the First Time

    US Military's Aerial Reconnaissance Pictures of England During WWII Go Online for the First Time

    LONDON — Way before Google Earth, there was photo reconnaissance by the U.S. Forces.

    During World War II, specifically in 1943 and 1944, reconnaissance units of the USAAF — the predecessor to the U.S. Air — captured photos of the changing face of England, primarily around the American bases in the south of the country.

    More than 3,600 of their black and white images were made available Wednesday in a free online, searchable map through the archive of Historic England, a public body that seeks to champion England's history and environment.

    From showing U.S. military personnel playing baseball to ancient monuments surrounded by anti-tank defenses, the collection gives a bird's-eye view of the impact of the war on England and the training that was necessary ahead of bombing and reconnaissance missions over Nazi-occupied .

    Unsurprisingly, the dozens of new airfields that were built by U.S. forces feature heavily, as do the military camps and storage facilities constructed in the run-up to D-Day in June 1944. Towns and cities were also captured, including the 1941 bomb damage at Manchester United Football Club's Old Trafford stadium, one of the most northernmost photographs in the collection.

    “Our collection of USAAF wartime photographs were taken in England by the pilots and aircraft of squadrons that provided intelligence for the eventual defeat of Nazi Germany,” said Duncan Wilson, Historic…

    Continue Reading This Article At Military.com

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