Bill Lambert

World War I Flying Ace


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SKU: 9781476664675 Categories: , , , Tags: ,

About the Book

World War I fighter pilot William C. Lambert of Ironton, Ohio, flew for the British Royal Air Force in 1918. When he left the Western Front in August, he had 22 victories—then the most achieved by any American pilot. (By the time of the Armistice in November, his total was surpassed by Eddie Rickenbacker, the former race car driver from Columbus, Ohio, with 26 victories.) Lambert survived the war and lived into his eighties, unwilling until late in life to seek public acclaim for his war record. This book examines his life and the wartime experiences that defined it.

About the Author(s)

Samuel J. Wilson is a professor of history at the University of Rio Grande in Rio Grande, Ohio.

Bibliographic Details

Samuel J. Wilson
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 276
Bibliographic Info: 24 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2016
pISBN: 978-1-4766-6467-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2612-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments viii
Preface 1
Introduction 3
One—The Birth of Aviation and the Road to War 9
Two—From Ironton to Canada 15
Three—Training 22
Four—Entering the Air War 30
Five—Spring 1918 41
Six—Summer: June 1918 58
Seven—Moving into Autumn: July 1918 83
Eight—Leave and Return 100
Nine—Return to the War 112
Ten—Leaving the War 139
Eleven—Barnstorming Days 145
Twelve—Life Between the Wars 156
Thirteen—Lambert in World War II and Afterward 164
Fourteen—Lambert and Friends: The Book Gets Published 176
Fifteen—Lambert as Artist 192
Sixteen—The Lambert They Knew 200
Seventeen—The Rediscovered Ace 207
Eighteen—The Final Years 216
Epilogue 222
Appendix: The Numbers Game 225
Chapter Notes 231
Bibliography 250
Index 259

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Wilson, does an exquisite job chronicling the life and times of this decorated fighter pilot…vivid accounts of contact with the enemy…the chapter dedicated to his [PTSD] diagnosis and the condition is mind-opening and impactful for anyone who has experienced similar symptoms or knows someone who has struggled with this very real disease. It is hard to put the book down as each encounter with the enemy keeps the pages turning. It is an essential read for historians and aviation enthusiasts.”—Roads to the Great War
  • “The dogfights, told from an ace’s perspective, are real, engaging, and leave the reader in suspense. It is hard to put the book down as each encounter with the enemy keeps the pages turning highlighting Lambert’s 22 confirmed victories…a must read”—Air University
  • “The overall package makes for a very interesting read [and] is something that’s worth having”—Cross & Cockade International; “well written, entertaining”—WWI Historical Association.