Louisiana Genealogy Blog: Missing Air Crew Reports Updated

  1. Update can be read here along with the reason behind this post. URL 
  2. 12/18/2010 Update:  URL Louisiana Newspapers at Hill Memorial Library include Lake Charles Daily American Press February 15, 1901 – present Microfilm #410. 
  3. Lake Charles Army Flying School – Wikipedia Article  “…Budget cuts in 1946 forced the inactivation of the 47th Bomb Group, and the airfield was inactivated on 31 December. The airfield was reassigned to Air Technical Service Command for disposition. It subsequently was turned over to the City of Lake Charles on 28 February 1947….”
  4.  Another pilot, Andrew Scully  1943
  5. U Boats 1943 December 21 – total number of ships lost in Gulf of Mexico to date: 40
  6. 12/25/2010 update:  First Cemetery Transcription additional source: Home Demonstration pamphlet.

There are records on Footnote concerning Missing Air Crew Reports. Of the 78,750 missing in action of World War II, Footnote provides that there are 946 Missing Air Crew Reports with words Gulf of Mexico. Given the specific date, prior to 1946, more information is determinable.

Upon looking at other internet public databases of Missing Air Crew Reports, the reports themselves require either a plane tail number or a persons name. Some websites have indicated that flight path information is also included in the MACR reports, however, flight path information is NOT indexed by the National Archives Records Administration to my knowledge. The relatively small number of MACR records pertaining to The Gulf of Mexico does offer a challenging opportunity to index the 946 available records for flight path, place of origin and destination along with plane tail numbers, type of plane and personal names of the World War II missing near, around or traversing over The Gulf of Mexico.

“Gulf of Mexico” 946 records
“Gulf of Mexico” & “Louisiana” 60 records
“Gulf of Mexico” & “Texas” 12 records
“Gulf of Mexico” & “Florida” 83 records
“Gulf of Mexico” & “Mississippi” 19 records
“Gulf of Mexico” & “Alabama” 47 records

This was a search on Footnote for records dated and prior to 1946.

http://www.footnote.com/page/1918_wwii_missing_air_crew_reports/

The MACR information pamphlet available at the URL
http://www.archives.gov/research/microfilm/m1380.pdf

This pamphlet reveals that the microfilmed record for 1945 is available only through March 1945, but that a copy of this record includes earlier records from 1939.

Microfiche Contents
5983 Air Crashes by Dates: January–March 1945

NARA offers its research rooms which have digitized versions on Footnote of these records OR they are available for order at $7.50 each plus shipping. The online NARA ordering website indicates that it is possible to order this in CD or DVD format.

M1380AE: 5983(1) 1 $7.50 $7.50 which also include data of earlier years of September 1939 – March 1945.

About these records excerpts from the above pamphlet pdf:
In late 1946, the function of collecting MACRs was transferred to the Identification Branch of the Memorial Division, Office of the Quartermaster General. Between 30 and 40 percent of all incidents even after the May 1943 directive were not reported through filing an MACR. About 100 case files are missing, most of them within the 15000–16708 range. They were removed from the series in the 1940s by the staffs of the records custodial units and never returned. The series order indicated MACR# 16605 which is within the range of microfilm pamphlet description identified as missing at least 103 records. Even with that records loss the Footnote website search indicates a small 963 records from which to interpret results for those MACR’s that contain The Gulf of Mexico. These records can be searched for free at a NARA Research facility or Presidential Library.


http://www.archives.gov/locations/

5969 MACR # 16605
5970 Air Crashes by Dates: 4 September 1939 – 31 December 1942
5971-1 Air Crashes by Dates: 3 January 1943 – 31 December 1943
5971-2 Air Crashes by Dates: 3 January 1943 – 31 December 1943
5972 Air Crashes by Dates: 1 January 1944 – 29 February 1944
5973 Air Crashes by Dates: March 1944
135
5974 Air Crashes by Dates: April 1944
5975 Air Crashes by Dates: May1944
5976 Air Crashes by Dates: June 1944
5977 Air Crashes by Dates: July 1944
5978 Air Crashes by Dates: August 1944
5979 Air Crashes by Dates: September 1944
5980 Air Crashes by Dates: October 1944
5981 Air Crashes by Dates: November 1944
5982 Air Crashes by Dates: December 1944
5983 Air Crashes by Dates: January–March 1945

Missing Air Crew Reports (MACRs), compiled 1942 – 1947
ARC Identifier 305256 / MLR Number A1 2109B
Series from Record Group 92: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774 – 1985

This series consists of Missing Air Crew Reports (MACRs) relating to Army Air Forces planes (and occupants) that were officially declared destroyed or missing in action during World War II. The basic document in each case file is usually the MACR form (AFPPA-14). For military personnel the information on the form covers their full names, grades, army service numbers organizations, and home stations. For civilians, if any, the information on the form covers their full names, positions, and employers. For the aircraft, it covers the date and hours the plane was lost and classified by the commanding officer as lost. Also contained on the MACR form is a statement that the emergency addressee of each occupant has been notified or that the home station commander has been requested to make such notification. Some reports include the name or names of persons with some last knowledge of the aircraft. Few MACRs forms contain all of this information, especially those prepared in 1943 and 1947.

In addition to the MACR form, MACRs include one or more other kinds of documents. Often present is an “Individual Casualty Questionnaire” (AFPPA-11) completed by a witness to the loss of a single crew member. After listing the name, rank, serial number, and crew position of the casualty, and the number, date, and destination of the mission, the respondent, who was not a crew member himself, indicated when and where the casualty bailed out of the plane and where he was last seen. The questionnaire usually also includes the source of this information and any explanation the respondent might have had of the casualty’s fate. Another kind of document found in many case files is the “Casualty Questionnaire” (AFPPA-12), which, unlike the “Individual Casualty Questionnaire,” was completed by a member of the crew who had survived the crash or loss of the aircraft and who responded to questions concerning the flight itself and all the remaining members of the crew. Many files also contain at least one “statement,” a brief narrative account of the occurrence, signed by a member of the crew or an eyewitness to the crash.

Other kinds of records found in the case files include aerial photographs of the crash site and of the aircraft, annotated maps of the flight pattern and the location of the crash, and related correspondence. Files documenting losses of aircraft over German occupied Europe often include German documents, mostly Luftgaukommando reports captured at the close of World War II, or English translations of extracts from these documents. These records often indicate which, if any, crew members survived and the place of their incarceration. In addition, the burial location of dead airmen is sometimes given.

More about this information from the NARA website to include a Name Index which the description states:

Name Index to the Series Missing Air Crew Reports (MACRs), compiled 1942 – 1947
ARC Identifier 641086 / MLR Number A1 2109A
Series from Record Group 92: Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General, 1774 – 1985

This series serves as the name index to the series “Missing Air Crew Reports (MACRs), 1942-1947 (ARC Identifier 305256). Most of the cards include only name (surname, first name, middle initial, or “NMI” for “no middle initial”), service number, and MACR number. About 40 percent of the index cards include the notation “No MACR,” or have a blank space for the MACR number. Overwhelmingly the names in the index are for Army Air Force (AAF) personnel who were crew members of missing aircraft.

The cards at the beginning of the index (from Aaberg to Biederman) include more information than just the name and serial number. These cards often include the nature of the casualty or loss and sometimes the place at which it occurred. Some of these additional annotations include abbreviations.

A few of the index entries are for names of passengers such as U.S. Military Academy cadets, Army nurses, U.S. Navy officers, foreign paratroopers, merchant seamen, war correspondents, members of the Red Cross, commercial airline personnel, and civilian instructors.

The index is incomplete and includes names of AAF casualties not referred to in a Missing Air Crew Report, either because a MACR was never filed or because the casualty was not related to an aircraft loss.

Referencing earlier posts:
Louisiana Genealogy Blog: Missing Air Crew Reports
Louisiana Genealogy Blog: On this day…..

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About Louisiana Genealogy Admin

I manage several RootsWeb mailing lists and message boards, support Louisiana Cemetery Preservation, am a former Louisiana and Mississippi librarian, have been researching genealogy of my family since 1988, and write and promote several blogs supporting either Louisiana genealogy or Louisiana cemeteries.
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