2 Replies Latest reply on Nov 13, 2020 6:59 AM by Rachael Salyer

    Seeking information about a plane shot down in WWII

    Stefan Krehbiel Newbie

      In my hometown, an American airplane was shot down in World War II. It was in Sippersfeld, Rheinland-Pfalz  in Germany, maybe in the years 1944-1945. It was a P-51 Mustang. Where can I find information about the plane or the pilot? Please reply if you have Information for me.

        • Re: Seeking information about a plane shot down in WWII
          Grace Yuhasz Adventurer

          A few questions to clarify:

          --Do you know if the pilot survived or if he died in the crash?

          --How certain are you that it was a P-51?

          --Do you have any other info, no matter how minute?

          • Re: Seeking information about a plane shot down in WWII
            Rachael Salyer Tracker

            Dear Mr. Krehbiel,


            Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


            Starting in late May 1943, the Army Air Forces required that a missing aircrew report (MACR) be filed when a crew was lost in combat. During the course of World War II some 16,700 such reports were filed. Most of the reports contain name, rank and service number of crew members; date, place and circumstances of loss; unit to which the crew was assigned; place of origin of the flight; and some details regarding the aircraft itself. Unfortunately, not all losses are documented. If the fate of the crew was established within a few days, a report often was not filed. If a plane was lost due to an accident, a report usually was not filed. And, because it was wartime, there occasionally were lapses in completing even required reports.


            We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Missing Air Crew Reports (MACRs), 1942-1947 in the Records of the Office of the Quartermaster General (Record Group 92). These records are indexed by name, date, and plane tail number. Many of the records have been digitized and may be viewed online via the Catalog. They also are available online via our digitization partner Fold3.com. More specific information about the incident you are researching would be needed before a search could be conducted. Please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) at archives2reference@nara.gov for access to and information about these records.


            We also identified multiple series of Downed Allied Aircraft Reports in the National Archives Collection of Foreign Records Seized (Record Group 242). Many of these records have been digitized and may be viewed online using the Catalog. The series Geographical Index to Downed Allied Aircraft Reports in Record Group 242 may be helpful for locating additional information about the plane you are interested in. This series has not been digitized. Please contact RDT2 for assistance with these records. 


            Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


            We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!