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May 2018: The Somerset Levels

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Charles Gibbs-Smith
- Favourite Briton.

Born in Teddington, London
Born on 22nd of March 1909
Died on 3rd of December 1981

Born 1909. Died 1981 - Aeronautical historian.

Educated at Harvard. Joined Victoria & Albert Museum and was keeper of the public relations and education department (1947-71). Instructor in aircraft recognition during WWII. Wrote Aviation – an Historical Survey From its Origins to the End of World War II (1960).

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1 Response to Charles Gibbs-Smith

From Susan Harvard on 6th April 2011
Charles Gibbs-Smith was my brother-in-law. His achievements were far more than those mentioned. After retiring from the V&A he was appointed to an honorary Fellowship at the Science Museum for whom he had written all their publications on aviation History - at no charge - and was given an Office there, above the Exhibition Road Post Office. He also spent a Year in Washington DC as the First Lindburgh Professor of Air and Space History at the Smithsonian Institute. Among many other claims to fame he coined the acronym UFO. He was awarded the Order of Dannebrog for his contribution to Danish History, but despite his vital war work in the Royal Observer Corps, and his seminal publication the Manual of Aircraft Recognition, illustrated with silhouettes and reprinted in hundreds of subsequent editions he was not awarded even the lowliest honour by his own country.

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The Last public hanging - 1868, Prince of Wales Opens Vauxhall Bridge - 1906, British Find Oil in Persia - 1908, First Female Magistrate Appointed - 1913, First ever Glyndebourne - 1934
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