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Balloon Mechanic Patch

Note: This item is currently in storage.

This insignia was worn by U.S. balloon mechanics in the Air Service's Balloon Section during World War I. U.S. balloon mechanics were trained in Europe by specialists from French balloon units, which had been in service for approximately 10 years prior. Maintaining balloons was an important requirement, as balloons were used in WWI primarily for day and night observation (locating targets and tracking activity behind enemy lines), as well as regulating artillery fire. This insignia is a white silk and thread balloon with basket on a black felt background. It is 3-1/4 inches high by 2-1/2 inches wide.

Donated by Col. (Ret.) Robert F. Schirmer.

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