Supply by Sky; The Quartermaster Airborne Development, 1950-53

Washington D. C. Department of the Army, Office of the Quartermaster General, Historical Branch, 1957. Presumed First Edition, First printing. Hardcover. xvii, [1], 626, [2] pages. Maps. Illustrations (figures, tables, chart). Rear board weak and restrengthened with glue. This is QMC Historical Studies Series II, No. 2. Inscribed by the author on the fep. Inscription reads For my good friend "Uncle Henry" Milne, with many thanks for his assistance. Bill Peifer 29 May 1958. Delivery of supplies by air also began during World War II; but with a slightly different history. At first this capability was intended to support parachute assaults; but Allied logisticians discovered that aerial resupply was often necessary to reach isolated units, both in Europe and in Asia. The practice developed without real doctrine and Soldiers developed the equipment over time. For example in Burma at first they used containers made from bamboo; but they later decided that burlap was cheaper. Accuracy was always a problem without the
right techniques and procedures. Supplies might land in no-mans-land or might reach the enemy. Aerial resupply was largely unsuccessful in Operation Market Garden; but a few months later aerial delivery enabled the 101st Airborne Division to defend the crucial
crossroads at Bastogne during the Ardennes Counteroffensive. In Asia and the Pacific supply by sky reached Chinese Nationalists forces fighting against Japan, and other isolated locations. In 1950 an Army board recommended transfer of all rigger and aerial delivery
responsibilities to the Quartermaster Corps. They reasoned that if the future success of parachute operations depended upon accurate delivery of supplies and heavy equipment, it was better to allow the Quartermaster Corps to specialize in this line of work. The Quartermaster General began rigger training at Fort Lee in January 1951, with the first class starting in May. The course at Fort Benning closed. This time the work emphasized both individual parachutes and cargo delivery. Just as the rigger function was being transferred to the Quartermaster Corps a new conflict began on June 25, 1950 when North Korean forces crossed into South Korea hoping to unify the nation under a communist dictatorship. The United States came to defend South Korea under United Nations sponsorship. The only airborne assault came early in the conflict when the 187th Regimental Combat Team attempted to cut of retreating North Korean forces and hopefully rescue American prisoners before they could be evacuated northward. The operation was partly successful. It captured over 3,800 prisoners, but not the huge numbers expected, nor did the paratroopers rescue American prisoners. Logistically this operation was noteworthy because this was the first time the Army successfully dropped moderately heavy equipment in a combat assault. The types of equipment included quarter-ton trucks (jeeps), antitank guns, and 105mm howitzers. Even when not supporting airborne assaults, aerial delivery achieved a new importance for supporting ground forces. Road networks were bad in good weather and impassable in rain or
snow. The rapidly changing advances and retreats complicated delivery of supplies by ground. Consequently aerial delivery often became the best means of reaching ground units.
Condition: Fair.

Keywords: Korean War, Quartermaster, Military Supply, Military Logistics, Air Supply, Airborne Training, Aerial Delivery, Aerial Supply, Airdrop, Parachutes, Storage, Tables of Organization and Equipment, Transportation Corps

[Book #84303]

Price: $125.00

See all items in Korean War, Military Logistics
See all items by