National Geographic : 1918 Jan
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Winslow. I read half of it the night that it came and stayed up late last night to finish it. He gives a very straight, interesting, and apparently not exagger ated account of the work over there, which has made somewhat clearer to me just what it is that I want to get into. Now I am even more anxious than I was before to join the service over there. "The more that I think about it and the more that I hear of it, the more de sirous I am of getting into the Flying Corps. If a man like Winslow, with a wife and daughter dependent on him, is willing to take the risk involved, I see no reason why I should not. "You mention the Ambulance Service in your last note. I have thought of that quite a little and would definitely prefer the aviation. The ambulance is worth while, I think, in that it gives one an opportunity to be of great service to humanity, but not so much so as the other. There will be a number of my classmates who will enlist in the Amer can Ambulance Service this spring, but the air service appeals to me." He then made arrangements with the American representatives of the Lafay ette Escadrille to go to France on the completion of his college year. January 29 he wrote: "I will get a physical examination in a few days. In regard to getting the training over here first, I do not think that it would be worth while. The in struction over there would be first hand, tried, for a definite purpose, and on the whole superior to what I could get here. I could also be picking up the language and the hang of the country at the same time." On February 24 he received word that his papers, presented with his application for admittance to the Franco-American Flying Corps, assured him on their face of a welcome when he presented himself in Paris. He was informed that if he utilized his spare time in availing him self of any and every opportunity to familiarize himself with flying, it would shorten his stay in the Student Aviators School in France. On March 26: "I haven't been able to find out any thing definite about the school at Mineola. As yet, no change has been announced, to my knowledge, in reference to hasten ing up the course in event of the coming of war. Over a hundred men have left college (Princeton) already to start train ing for the Mosquito Fleet and the rest of them are drilling every afternoon. "What do you think of the advisability of stopping college and going to some aviation school? Considering that it takes several months to become at all useful as an aviator and that war is prac tically inevitable now, I think it would be wise to get started right away." ANXIOUS TO LEARN FRENCH METHODS OF FLYING In a letter of April 3: "I saw in the morning paper that the American flyers in France would be transferred to American registry immedi ately after the declaration of war. When you next see General Squier, I wish that you would sound him on the probability of a force being sent to France to learn to fly according to French methods. That is the one thing above all others that I want to get into. If there is any chance of that I do not want to get in volved in anything else. "It is quite certain that seniors who leave college now, to go into military work, will receive their degrees. I would not object to losing the work, as it is not my present intention to keep on with theoretical chemistry, and that is what I am devoting my time to this spring. From the standpoint of education alone, I think that my time could be more profit ably spent in the study of aviation." Leave was granted by the university, and on April 6 B. Stuart Walcott was appointed a special assistant to Mr. Sid ney D. Waldon, inspector of airplanes and airplane motors, Signal Service at Large. He immediately reported to Mr. Waldon and worked with him through April. May I he went to Newport News, Virginia. May 2 he reported: "My first trip up was this afternoon with Victor Carlstrom. We were out 16 minutes and climbed 3,500 feet. It was all very simple, getting up there-a little wind and noise and some bumps and pockets in the air-a glorious view of the harbor.