The Ticonderoga Historical Society invites the public to its free program at the Hancock House on Friday, September 22 at 7 p.m. Featured speaker will be North Country Community College Library Director Brian O’Connor, who will speak on “Birth of the American Eagle – The Army Air Service in WWI.”
The United States Army Air Service was established during World War One by President Woodrow Wilson. Under commanding General John J. Pershing, this fledgling service quickly distinguished itself in the skies over France, beginning in the spring of 1918. By the end of the war, the Air Service had employed 45 squadrons covering 85 miles of battle front. 71 pursuit pilots were credited with shooting down five or more German aircraft while in American service, while the Air Service overall destroyed 756 enemy aircraft and 76 balloons in combat.
“This was a tremendously significant set of accomplishments for a very young branch of service,” said THS President Bill Dolback. “Aviation as a military strategy was still untested. The bravery of these young pilots is remarkable and their story is particularly relevant as we commemorate U.S. entry into World War One during this year.”
Brian O’Connor has been a member of the North Country Community College Library staff since 2010. He holds a Master of Science in Library Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Master of Arts in American History from Florida Atlantic University and was enrolled in PhD studies at the University of Connecticut.
Specific information regarding this and other historical society programs and events can be obtained by calling the Historical Society at 518-585-7868, by checking Facebook or the THS website at ticonderogahistoricalsociety.org.
Founded in 1897 and chartered in 1909, the Ticonderoga Historical Society advances the preservation and interpretation of history through its collections, programs and community outreach. The Historical Society makes area history an integral part of community life by connecting past and present.