The Air Force List as a Historical Source

Thoughts on Military History

Here is a section of my introduction that discusses the utility of The Air Force List as a historical source. It is linked in places to concepts that are discussed in other parts of the thesis such as leadership and organisational theory. Nonetheless, it highlights the utility of the List as a source and how it is being used as the cornerstone of my methodology.

My thesis makes use of an underused source in the historiography of the RAF, The Air Force List.[1] First published in March 1919, though an edition backdated to April 1918 was produced after its first appearance, the List has become a staple source for historians and genealogists alike in tracing the careers of individual officers. The List consists of a multitude of useful information. It outlines the organisation of the RAF through the Air Ministry and Air Council down to individual squadrons…

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