As early as 1914, the dreamers who saw the possibilities in aviation began to envision non fixed-wing aircraft and ships that could carry them out to sea. The attached 1914 article concerns an unnamed ship being constructed at the Blyth Shipyard in England that is designed to transport "flying boats" at sea, picking-up and lowering to and from the sea by way of cranes. The article is illustrated.
It was during the Italian-Turkish War (1911 - 12) that aircraft began to play active rolls in support of military operations. This article is remarkable in that it reports that as early as 1912, aircraft was used not merely to aid in the observation of enemy troop movements but also to drop bombs.
"Captain Monte of the Italian army aeroplane corps has achieved the distinction of being the first airman wounded in battle while in the air with his machine."
In this letter from the artist Bernard Boutet de Monvel (1884 - 1949) the fellow explains thoroughly his thoughts and adventures as a bombardier in a Vosin bi-plane; experiences which contrast greatly with his days in the trenches and he writes well on the feelings of loneliness that an aviator can experience at 2000 feet.
For those who are interested in learning about the living conditions and daily life of World War One pilot officers this article can only help you.
An American fighter pilot of the R.F.C., Lieutenant E.M. Roberts, gave this account of the deadly game of "Boche-hunting above the clouds":
"I noticed he was going down a little, evidently for the purpose of shooting me from underneath. I was not quite sure as yet that such was really his intention; but the man was quick...he put five shots into my machine. But all of them missed me."
"I maneuvered into an offensive position as Quickly as I could, and I had my machine gun pelting him...The Hun began to spin earthward."
The attached 1912 Literary Digest article addresses the debt that past and future aviators owe to Louis Pierre Mouillard (1834 – 1897); an aviation visionary whose relentless study of bird flight throughout the last half of the Nineteenth Century paved the way for aviators yet unborn.
Pilot Charles Hamilton (1886 – 1914) made the first round-trip flight from Philadelphia to New York and back again flying a Curtis bi-plane in 1910:
"He flew from New York to the Philadelphia in one hour and fifty minutes. His average speed on trips to the Quaker City was 46.92 miles per hour, but returning he averaged 51.36 miles per hour."
The NEW YORK TIMES paid Hamilton $5,000.00 for this achievement.