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“Smashed Wings” by Ralph Oppeheim

Link - Posted by David on March 1, 2024 @ 6:00 am in

MARCH is Mosquito Month! We’re celebrating Ralph Oppenheim and his greatest creation—”The Three Mosquitoes! We’ll be featuring three early tales of the Mosquitoes over the next few Fridays as well as looking at D. Campbell’s The Three Wasps, a blatant Mosquitoes ripoff. So, let’s get things rolling, as the Mosquitoes like to say as they get into action—“Let’s Go!”

The greatest fighting war-birds on the Western Front are once again roaring into action. The three Spads flying in a V formation so precise that they seemed as one. On their trim khaki fuselages, were three identical insignias—each a huge, black-painted picture of a grim-looking mosquito. In the cockpits sat the reckless, inseparable trio known as the “Three Mosquitoes.” Captain Kirby, their impetuous young leader, always flying point. On his right, “Shorty” Carn, the mild-eyed, corpulent little Mosquito, who loved his sleep. And on Kirby’s left, completing the V, the eldest and wisest of the trio—long-faced and taciturn Travis.

Let’s get things off the ground with an early Mosquitoes tale from the pages of War Stories from January 1928! The enterprise was extremely dangerous, though simple. The Three Mosquitoes had been assigned to escort a flight of bombers that were to go across the lines to Staffletz, where, besides an important railroad junction, there were some Zeppelin sheds. The railway was to be damaged as much as possible, and then the machines were to ‘‘lay their eggs” on the Zeppelin sheds. Complicating matters—Kirby was flying in an unfamiliar, old Sopwith rather than his usual Spad!

Once again the ‘’Three Mosquitoes,” with the famous Kirby leading them, go out on a daring mission. The enemy’s Zeppelin sheds had to be destroyed—But could it be done? And Kirby was flying an old plane!

And check back next Friday when the inseparable trio will be back with another exciting adventure!

“Grindin’ High” by Frederick C. Davis

Link - Posted by David on January 19, 2024 @ 6:00 am in

THIS week we have a short story by renowned pulp author Frederick C. Davis. Davis is probably best remembered for his work on Operator 5 where he penned the first 20 stories, as well as the Moon Man series for Ten Detective Aces and several other continuing series for various Popular Publications. He also wrote a number of aviation stories that appeared in Aces, Wings and Air Stories.

This week’s story features that crack pilot for World News Reel, the greatest gelatine newspaper that ever flashed on a silver screen—Nick Royce! Davis wrote twenty stories with Nick for Wings magazine from 1928-1931. Here, in his first story, Nick is mistaken for a world famous stunt flyer while trying to wrangle a job with the World news Newsreel service. And although he doesn’t make a good first impression he does come up with the goods in the end! From the January 1928 Wings, it’s Frederick C. Davis’ “Grinding’ High!”

A blazing steamer—a roaring furnace amid a vast expanse of desolate sea—and Nick Royce, fledgling, zoomed for the greatest scoop of all to prove himself a birdman!