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“They Had What It Takes – Part 33: Arch Whitehouse” by Alden McWilliams

Link - Posted by David on August 24, 2011 @ 9:12 pm in

This week we bring you Part 33 of Alden McWilliams’ illustrated tribute to the pioneer fliers of the early days of aviation. He called it “They Had What it Takes” and this installment appeared in the October 1939 Flying Aces. It features our old pal here at Age of Aces—Arch Whitehouse. Whitehouse was a prolific writer, both for the pulps and aviation-themed books after the pulps ended. We’ve posted a number of Whitehouse’s stories from Flying Aces and Sky Birds with some of his long running characters like Buzz Benson, Crash Carringer, Coffin Kirk, The Casket Crew, Tug Hardwick and The Griffon!

Arch Whitehouse was blessed with a fertile imagination which seemed to spill over into the acounts of his own war record. McWilliams piece and Whitehouse’s own biography, Hell in Helmets, credit Whitehouse with shooting down 16 German aeroplanes—at most he may have had 4 kills—it seems that he was something of a serial exaggerator.

We’ve posted this installment long before we started posting the entire series of Alden McWilliam’s “They Had What It Takes”, but here it is in sequence in case you missed it.

Next time: Clarence Chamberlin—Trans-Atlantic Vet.

New Strange Desktops

Link - Posted by David on August 21, 2011 @ 2:38 pm in

We can’t stop harping on about the excellent art work that doesn’t get enough credit in our books. Frederick Blakeslee and John Flemming Gould were masters at rendering airplanes in flight while our own Chris Kalb’s inventive designs are simply the coolest out there.

In our books the spine breaks up the tableaus—and in the interior art galleries we present the art as it was originally published. We spend some time mending the images back together to create a complete image—with a majority of our work ending up in the gutter of the book anyway. Some of these images are just so good we felt the needed to turn them into desktops for you to enjoy on your computer everyday. And we’re getting the ball rolling with three of Chris’ splash page treatments from our latest book, Captain Philip Strange: Strange War. You can choose from the plane vs. pterodactyl of Scourge of the Skies; the bullseye cocarde of Cocardes of Courage; or the green flaming bombs, in black and white here, of The Unholy Horror!


They are available in our Age of Aces Desktops Gallery in a variety of aspect ratios—pick the one that best suits your computer.

We plan to add to the gallery with images from previous books as well as those to come!

“They Had What It Takes – Part 32: “Casey” Jones” by Alden McWilliams

Link - Posted by David on August 16, 2011 @ 10:45 pm in

Age of Aces presents the thirty-second installment of Alden McWilliams’ illustrated tribute to the pioneer fliers of the early days of aviation. This week McWilliams chronicles the life and contributions to aviation of aero booster No.1—Charles S. “Casey” Jones. Jones, a veteran of the hell skies of WWI, would rise to prominance as one of the great air racers of his time. He used his popularity to sell the American public on aviation, contributing to radio shows and having columns in two leading aviation magazines—”Flying Colors” in Air Adventures (1928-29) and “Casey Jones’ Flying Course” in Sky Birds (1933-34).

In 1932 he founded the Casey Jones School of Aeronautics along with Lee D. Warrender and George A. Vaughn Jr. The school went through a number on name changes, the most recent was in 2004 when it was remamed after Vaughn.

Casey passed away in February 1976.