If the iconic planes for the USAAF were the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress and the North American Aviation P-51 Mustang. the corresponding icons for the RAF have to be the Avro Lancaster and the Supermarine Spitfire. The Spitfire did yeoman service in the Battle of Britain. Between that and its performance and sleekness, it became the star of the Battle. To first approximation, the Spitfires took on the escorting fighters while the Hurricanes destroyed the bombers. In real battle, nothing is ever that simple or straightforward, but that was generally the battle plan.
Later, when the Allies went on the offensive in the air, Spitfires escorted bombers on raids over France and the Low Countries. For longer missions, escort duties were taken over by American fighters, which generally had better range than the Spitfire.
- The RAF vs the Axis" [ HTML ] is a six-page pictorial article featuring action and detail photos of British, German and Italian planes, including:
- "Spitfire Hospital" [ HTML ] is a short, illustrated article on Spitfire repair depots.
- "The Spitter" [ HTML ] tells the history of Spitfire development with specs and comparisons with some contemporary planes. It also describes the RAF defense philosophy during the Battle of Britain.
- "The Man In Action" [ HTML ] includes an account of the experiences of a Spitfire pilot, Squadron Leader A C Deere, DFC and bar.
- News clips in the "Aviation Abroad"[ HTML ] column in Aviation, March, 1943, mentions the Spitfire IX and Seafire.
- A review of the movie Spitfire [ HTML ] includes publicity stills from the movie.
- A news clip [ HTML ] mentions the Spitfire IX being seen in Italy.
- A news clip [ HTML ] gives early details on the Spitfire XII Griffon-powered version.
- A news clip [ HTML ] mentions Wright Field mods to increase range.
- "Spitfire Mark XIV" [ HTML ] introduces the Griffon-powered type with physical specs performance was still classified.
- "Now We Are In It" [ HTML ] includes two Spitfire photos:
- A news clip with photo from October, 1940, shows nose of a Spitfire in Ottawa, Canada, being inspected by USAAC personnel.
- Spitfires in formation seen from 10 o'clock; from "Ten Air Power Lessons for America."[ HTML ]
- A Sketchbook drawing showing the engine installation labeled to indicate important systems.
- The "Have You Seen?" section for March, 1942, shows a Spitfire undergoing gunnery test. View is from 7 o'clock.
- "Spitfire Hospital" includes 4 photos of battle-damaged Spitfires under repair.
- The "War in the Air" feature for July, 1942, shows a four-cannon Spitfire, probably a Mark VC, on tour in the United States.
- "The Spitter" [ HTML ] includes 5 photos:
- Nemesis of the Luftwaffe, the Spitfire long has been a fighting symbol of victory to the average British layman.
- An unending stream of Spitfires is being produced by a number "shadow factories" scattered throughout Britain. Subassemblies are fed into this Vickers assembly plant.
- This is the first Spitfire, built and flown in 1936. It was clocked at 342 mph. Current models have jet exhaust stacks, controllable propellers and revamped cockpit.
- In less than three months the RAF downed 2,375 confirmed German planes in daylight fighting. Note elliptical wing design and protruding cannon on banking Spitfire.
- Lower photo shows test of cannon guns that are winning air control over continent.
- Spitfires now are inflicting great damage to enemy positions in France. Here they are shown on a sweep over the Channel.
- Flying's "For Identification feature for August, 1942, shows a photo and 3-view silhouette; photo view is from 2 o'clock.
- "British Aircraft" [ HTML ] includes a photo "There are 40 instruments for the pilot to watch in the cockpit of a Spitfire. Center is control stick with gun button."
- "Fighter Command"
[ HTML ] includes a photo: "Vickers Spitfire currently in use by Fighter Command has two 20-mm cannon and four machine guns. Earlier model had eight machine guns."
- A news clip with photo shows Spitfire VII on the ground seen from 2 o'clock.
- Yearbook entries from 1943 show Spitfire V and Spitfire IX.
- A news clip with photo from June, 1943, "Seafire comes in" shows a Seafire grabbing a wire on HMS Indomitable.
- A "Gallery" color photo shows a Spitfire Vb in flight, seen from 2 o'clock.
- A Yearbook entry from 1944 shows the Spitfire IX on the ground, seen from 2 o'clock.
- "Fighter design" [ HTML ] includes a sketch showing the key structural elements of the plane.
- "Elongated Spit" shows a Spitfire IX with extended, pointed wing tips from below.
- "Achtung! Another Spitfire" shows a Griffon-powered Spitfire XIV with the 5-bladed Rotol prop, seen from 11 o'clock.
- A "Gallery" color photo shows a Spitfire Vb, seen from two o'clock.
- "Spitfire Mark XIV" [ HTML ] includes 2 photos"
- Uncaptioned plan view from directly below
- Photo showing the plane on the ground seen from 2 o'clock: "Apart from the five-bladed propeller and extended nose Mark XIV has original Spitfire bully elliptical wings but larger rudder and is equipped with retractable tail wheel; it carries either 250- or 500-lb bomb."
- Yearbook entries from 1945 show a Seafire III in two photos both on the ground, one with wings folded seen from 1 o'clock and one normal seen from 10 o'clock and a Spitfire XIV in an inflight photo from 10 o'clock and a dimensioned 3-view line drawing.
- "British Seafire XV and Nazi jet bomber" shows a Griffon-powered Seafire XV touching down on HMS Pretoria Castle.
- "British Spiteful and French 'In-Spite-Of'" shows a Spiteful XIV seen from 3 o'clock.