395th Bombardment Group

Summary

395th Bombardment Group
Color Photographed B-17E in Flight.jpg
B-17 Flying Fortress as flown by the group
Active1943–1944
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
RoleCombat Crew Training
EngagementsAmerican Theater of World War II[1]

The 395th Bombardment Group is an inactive United States Air Force unit. It was part of Second Air Force, serving as a heavy bomber training unit from February 1943 until it was inactivated on 1 April 1944 in a reorganization of Army Air Forces training units..

History

The 395th Bombardment Group was organized at Ephrata Army Air Base, Washington on 16 February 1943.[1] The group drew its original cadre from the 34th Bombardment Group.[2] Its original components were the 588th, 589th, 590th and 591st Bombardment Squadrons.[1][3][4] The group served as an Operational Training Unit (OTU) for Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress units preparing for overseas deployment. The OTU program was patterned after the unit training system of the Royal Air Force. It involved the use of an oversized parent unit to provide cadres to "satellite groups"[5] The parent unt then assumed responsibility for their training and oversaw their expansion with graduates of Army Air Forces Training Command schools to become effective combat units.[6][7] The 398th, 401st and 447th Bombardment Groups were formed at Ephrata during the group's period as an OTU there.[8] A detachment of the group, referred to as the 395th Heavy Bombardment Crew Detachment, conducted Phase I training, acting, in effect, as a fifth squadron of the group.[9] Phase I training concentrated on individual training in crewmember specialties.[10]The 589th and 590th Squadrons conducted Phase II training, each being organized as a provisional group for this purpose.[9] This phase emphasized the coordination for the crew to act as a team. The final phase (Phase III) concentrated on operation as a unit.[10]

In late September 1943, the 483d Bombardment Group was formed at Ephrata. The cadre for this group was provided by the 21st Antisubmarine Squadron, which moved from the Gulf Coast when the Navy took over antisubmarine warfare operations from the Army Air Forces.[11] While the 483d Group was organizing, the 21st Squadron was attached to the 395th Group.[9]

In October 1943, the group and its squadrons moved to Ardmore Army Air Field, Oklahoma, where its mission changed to acting as a Replacement Training Unit (RTU).[1] Like OTUs, RTUs were oversized units, but their mission was to train individual pilots or aircrews.[12] By this time most of the AAF's combat units had been activated and almost three quarters of them had deployed overseas. With the exception of special programs, like forming Boeing B-29 Superfortress units, training “fillers” for existing units became more important than unit training.[13] However, the AAF found that standard military units like the 395th Group, based on relatively inflexible tables of organization were not proving well adapted to the training mission, particularly the training of replacements. Accordingly, the AAF adopted a more functional system in which each base was organized into a separate numbered unit.[14] The group was inactivated on 1 April 1944,[1] along with its components and support elements at Ardmore, and replaced by the 222d AAF Base Unit (Combat Crew Training Station, Bombardment, Heavy).

Lineage

  • Constituted as the 395th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 29 January 1943
Activated on 16 February 1943
Inactivated on 1 April 1944[1]

Assignments

Components

  • 21st Antisubmarine Squadron (later 818th Bombardment Squadron): attached 28 September 1943 – October 1943[9][15]
  • 588th Bombardment Squadron: 16 February 1943 – 1 April 1944[3]
  • 589th Bombardment Squadron: 16 February 1943 – 1 April 1944[3]
  • 590th Bombardment Squadron: 16 February 1943 – 1 April 1944[4]
  • 591st Bombardment Squadron: 16 February 1943 – 1 April 1944[4]

Stations

  • Ephrata Army Air Base, Washington, 16 February 1943
  • Ardmore Army Air Field, Oklahoma, 25 October 1943 – 1 April 1944[1]

Aircraft

  • Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress[1]

Campaign

Campaign Streamer Campaign Dates Notes
Streamer AC.PNG American Theater without inscription 16 February 1943–1 April 1944 [1]

References

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Maurer,Combat Units, pp. 282-283
  2. ^ "Abstract, History 395th Bombardment Group, Feb-Aug 1943". Air Force History Index. Retrieved 7 October 2021.
  3. ^ a b c Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 675
  4. ^ a b c Maurer, Combat Squadrons, p. 676
  5. ^ Craven & Cate, Introduction, p. xxxvi
  6. ^ Goss, p. 74
  7. ^ Greer, p. 601
  8. ^ Maurer, Combat Units, pp. 284, 286, 322
  9. ^ a b c d "Abstract, History 395th Bombardment Group, Sep 1943". Air Force History Index. Retrieved 7 October 2021.
  10. ^ a b Greer, p. 606
  11. ^ Maurer,Combat Squadrons, pp.777-778
  12. ^ Craven & Cate, Introduction, p. xxxvi
  13. ^ Goss, pp. 74-75
  14. ^ Goss, p. 75
  15. ^ "Abstract, History 395th Bombardment Group, Oct 1943". Air Force History Index. Retrieved 7 October 2021.

Bibliography

Public Domain This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

  • Craven, Wesley F.; Cate, James L., eds. (1955). The Army Air Forces in World War II (PDF). Vol. VI, Men & Planes. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. LCCN 48003657. OCLC 704158. Retrieved 17 December 2016. |volume= has extra text (help)
Goss, William A. (1955). "The Organization and its Responsibilities, Chapter 2 The AAF". In Craven, Wesley F.; Cate, James L. (eds.). The Army Air Forces in World War II (PDF). Vol. VI, Men & Planes. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. LCCN 48003657. OCLC 704158. Retrieved 17 December 2016. |volume= has extra text (help)
Greer, Thomas H. (1955). "Recruitment and Training, Chapter 18 Combat Crew and Unit Training". In Craven, Wesley F.; Cate, James L. (eds.). The Army Air Forces in World War II (PDF). Vol. VI, Men & Planes. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. LCCN 48003657. OCLC 704158. Retrieved 17 December 2016. |volume= has extra text (help)
  • Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1983) [1961]. Air Force Combat Units of World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-912799-02-1. LCCN 61060979. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  • Maurer, Maurer, ed. (1982) [1969]. Combat Squadrons of the Air Force, World War II (PDF) (reprint ed.). Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History. ISBN 0-405-12194-6. LCCN 70605402. OCLC 72556. Retrieved 17 December 2016.