More about Wallace

copy-DSC00778-1024x7681.jpgWallace Alexander Smart served with the Royal Engineers before he transferred to the Royal Flying Corps. Posted to 1 Squadron in France on 10 April 1918, he scored 5 victories flying the S.E.5a.




Aircraft Opponent Location

31 May 1918

08:50 1 S.E.5a (C1092) Albatros D.V (OOC) Dranoutre

01 Jun 1918

19:40 1 S.E.5a (C1092) Pfalz D.III (OOC) 1 Armentières

01 Jul 1918

08:05 1 S.E.5a (C1092) Halberstadt C (DESF) 2 Messines

01 Oct 1918

17:10 1 S.E.5a (D6973) Fokker D.VII (OOC) 3 NE of St. Quentin

29 Oct 1918

14:20 1 S.E.5a (D6973) Fokker D.VII (DESF) Landrecies
1 Shared with Capt Charles Lavers, Lt L W Mawbey (B130), Lt E M Newman (C1101), Lt Ernest Kelly, LtHarold Kullberg, Capt Percy Clayson, Lt C B Henderson (C1849), Lt Duerson Knight, 2Lt H S Hennessey (D377)
2 Shared with Lt Harold Kullberg, Lt John Bateman
3 Shared with Capt Charles Lavers, Lt Basil Moody, Lt F M Squires (E6009), Lt F A S Nesbitt (B7881), Lt Boyd (C9065), Lt Douglas Cameron, Lt L H Phinney (D6951), Capt W Pallister (F5473), Lt W Newby (E1353), Lt C W Arning (E4023), 2Lt W Joffe (B8427), Lt Dickinson (C1812)

The claim on the 29 October 2018 was one of four on that day. These four were the last claims for 1 Squadron of World War 1 [29 Oct] .

Wallace Smart’s listing on the Aerodrome

No 1 Squadron

RAF No 1 Squadron posing for a photograph in Claremarais, France on 3rd July 1918. The squadron was formed in 1878 as No 1 Balloon Company, and has been in continuous operation ever since 1912. The entire squadron is captured in the picture above, including the Warrant Officer with his stick (third from right) and the mascot beagle hound next to him. Wallace is second left in the foreground.
In the image below the pilot wearing his white scarf (centre) – Wallace is stood (with his hands in his pockets).

Here is a another photo from a slightly different angle



[31 May] The notes under First Blood are believed to have occurred close to Dranoutre on the 31st May 2018 a few days before the photograph above was taken. Wallace was in S.E.5a (C1092).

[Ritter] Roland Ritter (born in Muncy, Pennsylvania in 1892) was killed on the 24 August 1918. His grave is in the Somme American Cemetery and  Memorial, Bony. The American Legion post 268 in Muncy is named after him.

[ClaysonClayson went on to shoot down 29 aircraft, making him the second most successful pilot in 1 Squadron and 13th most successful British pilot in the whole war. He managed to achieve this in less than six months of service for 1 Squadron.  He was awarded the Military Cross and the Distinguished Flying Cross on the 24 July 1919 by The King at Buckingham Palace.

[Richthofen] Richthofen is more commonly known as The Red Barron. He was killed in action on 21 April 1918, but The Richthofen Circus which he set up was taken over by Wilhelm Reinhard.

[29 Oct]  The squadron fought its last actions on the following day. Thirteen SE’s left Bouvincourt at 1300, ostensively to escort 107 Squadron. The rendezvous was not achieved and the SE’s proceeded on a standard OP. Near Landrecies they encountered a large formation of Fokkers. One of the Fokkers was seen flying out of formation at 8,000ft and Lt Smart took the opportunity and dived onto it. He opened fire at 200 yards and continued with short bursts right down to point blank range. This EA fell in a series of steep spirals with smoke pouring out. Smart then lost sight of it due to the presence of other EA. Lt Moody however, confirmed that it was still falling and pouring smoke at 3,000ft. Ten minutes later Capt Hoidge was attracted by AA bursts near Le Chateau. There he spotted a Fokker attacking a British balloon. Hoidge dived on this EA from the east and got in 50 rounds before a stoppage forced him to break off. He corrected the stoppage and pursued the Fokker to the east. He got to within 50 yards over Pommereuil and opened fire again. The Fokker fell into a sideslip and the pilot was seen to bail out! Hoidge was then forced to head for home, due to the arrival of more Fokkers. The patrol returned to find that Lt Newby was missing. Capt Pallister returned a little later than the rest and confirmed that he had seen Smart’s EA, crash and explode. It would appear Lt Newby had been shot down by Ltn v Fredin of Jasta 50.

Footnote - In the absence of any known German fatalities in this area, it is possible the climatic crash seen by Pallister may have been either Newby’s aircraft, or the Fokker downed by Hoidge.

From: ‘Unpublished history’ – A History of No 1 Squadron RFC/RAF 1917-1918 by Russell Gannon

The Flying Diary of Wallace A Smart