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Death in the Air: The War Diary and Photographs of a Flying Corps Pilot


Price: $50.00
Currently Available
Item Number: WW1MISC-1
Originally thought to be the war time diary and photographs of an RFC pilot during WW1, this book has since been revealed as an elaborate hoax. In the early 1930's, a woman going by the name of Gladys Maud Cockburn-Lange sold the photographs and story to a publisher who then made this book from them. Then, in the 1980's, a donation to the Smithsonian Air Museum contained among other items the originals of the photos Mrs. Cockburn-Lange had sold. The donation was traced back to a Mr. Wesley David Archer, an American pilot during WW1 who fought alongside the RFC and then went on to work in Hollywood doing special effects. The pictures were proven to be spectacular fakes, and further digging made it clear that Mrs. Gladys Maud Cockburn-Lange was actually Mrs. Gladys Maud "Betty" Archer, Mr. Archer's wife.

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