View Full Version : Aerial photography - then & now

12-13-2011, 08:53 PM
I wasn't sure if such a thread had been started already, but I'm too lazy to dig the archive.

I've been reading recently again about the bombing campaign in Europe. While surfing the net I came across many websites dedicated to 8AF bombardment groups. Most of them have quite impressive photo archives containg pics of the planes, crews, bases, damaged bombers etc. There also plenty of aerial photos of targets (most of them in Germany).
Anyway, I found it very entertaining to compare those pics with google maps.

Here is a photo of an Malbork Airbase in Poland, which used to be a home for the 41st Tactical Squadron (disbanded in January 2011).

During WW2 a FW-190 factory was located there. I found a recon photo taken after 8AF bombed that place. The raid led by 303rd BG reached Marienburg (German name of the city) on April 9th 1944.
Mission report:
Both pictures merged below.


12-13-2011, 09:54 PM
Schwienfurt, Germany.
Below photo taken during the fairst raid against Schweinfurt ball-bearing factories on 17th of August 1943. The mission proved to be unsuccessful and caused little disruption to the industry. Two simultaneous attack of that day (Schweinfurt and Regensburg) resulted in loss of 60 heavy bombers and 552 crewmen.

12-13-2011, 11:27 PM
Munster, Germany.

On 26th of October 1944 8AF bombers were sent to attack Nordstern Synthetic oil plant at Gelsenkirchen. Due to thick cloud cover over the target, bomb groups switched to the secondary target which was the Munster marshalling yard. As this target was also fully covered with clouds, the formation leader decided to use PFF equipment (radar). The result of bombing can be seen below.


The mission report of 303rd BG is here:

12-19-2011, 09:23 AM
The Dijon Airport, France.

The 303rd BG attacked that Luftwaffe airfield on March 28th 1944.
It happened to be a perfect bombing mission, with target severly damaged, no opposition from flak nor fighters, and without a loss of a single bomber.
Mission report:

12-22-2011, 10:31 AM
Gotha, Germany.
Picture below shows the area where The Gothaer Waggonfabrik A.G. was located. During the war years it was the largest manufacturer of Me-110 fighters, with capacity of 75-90 figthers a month. In addition, it was the only German manufacturer of heavy-type road trailer with 20 to 70 tons capacity.
The factory was bombed twice, on 24th February 1944 and 20th July 1944.
Picture below shows the result of the second, final attack (picture taken day later).