Files and images about the American Volunteer Group commanded by Claire Chennault. The AVG Flying Tigers defended Burma and China with their shark-faced P-40 Tomahawks in the opening months of the Pacific War, December 1941 - July 1942.

Flying Tigers
3rd edition


One of the most interesting bits in The Shadow Tiger is an account of the Hawk 75 and Claire Chennault's supposed combat victories in China. With the kind permission of Billy McDonald III, I have copied that page and published it here as Billy McDonald and the Hawk 75 with a wonderful photo of the two pilots and the fixed-gear export fighter, based on an airframe that would evolve into the legendary P-40 Tomahawk flown by the Flying Tigers.

Nimitiz and CAMCO And Barret Tilman sent along this fascinating image from the Naval Aviation Museum's Facebook page. It's a memo by Admiral Chester Nimitz about his August 18, 1941, meeting with Frank Knox, the secretary of the navy; Lauchlin Currie, the young economist who all but ran the American Volunteer Group from the White House; Admiral Harold Stark, the chief of naval operations; and other worthies to discuss the recruitment of pilots by the Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company. As I make it out, the memo says: "Today in SecNav's office - conferred with Mr Currie, Stark, Ramsey, Beatty - re CAMCO - matters. SecNav directed that all officers - Navy and Marine Corps who had applied for resignations - should be let go for CAMCO. Subsequently in my office - Mr Currie - Lynch and I agreed that if we released a total of 63 (Navy and Marine) officers - he would be satisfied for the present. C.W. Nimitz."

Satisfied for the present, indeed! Currie would soon be back in hopes of recruiting an all-Navy 3rd American Volunteer Group to join the others in January 1942.

Nice photos and story on the Xinhua website about a restored Douglas C-47 in U.S. Army Ferry Command warpaint, landing at Kunming after crossing the infamous Hump of the Himalyas that claimed so many American and Chinese lives during the 1940s. The plane is destined for the Flying Tigers Heritage Park in Guilin. Blue skies! — Daniel Ford

A 'Special Air Unit' for China:

The Tigers forge a legend:

Remains - A Story of the Flying Tigers

The P-40 files:

The Bill Pawley files:

Books etc.:

A good myth never dies: