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Photographs of the 8th Balloon Company

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows the Kite Balloon just going up in Fort Omaha, Neb. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows the Kite Balloon just going up in Fort Omaha, Neb. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows the burning of an 8th Company balloon at Eclis-Fontaine, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows the burning of an 8th Company balloon at Eclis-Fontaine, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows a balloon in bed at Toul, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo shows a balloon in bed at Toul, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo was taken Nov. 11, 1918, at Beauclair, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I. This photo was taken Nov. 11, 1918, at Beauclair, France. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Note: This item is currently in storage.

This collection of photos follows the 8th Balloon Company from training at Fort Omaha, Neb., to the Front. The 8th Balloon Company was one of 17 balloon companies to see combat in World War I.

The company departed Fort Omaha for overseas duty on Jan. 17, 1918. After their arrival in France, the company moved to the balloon school at Cuperly-sur-Marne, but was forced to abandon the aerodrome in March 1918 due to advancing German forces. The men of the 8th Balloon Company finally headed to the Front in July 1918. Over the course of their service in France, the men of the 8th Balloon Company braved bad weather, an outbreak of scarlet fever, and constant harassment by German aircraft.

The photographs are part of the collection of Capt. Marion L. Witherup, the commanding officer of the 8th Balloon Company.

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In accordance with the updated guidance released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Department of Defense (DoD) and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force will require all visitors to wear face masks indoors effective July 30, 2021 until further notice.

Visitors ages three and up will be required to wear masks while indoors at the museum. This policy applies to all visitors, staff and volunteers regardless of vaccination status. Visitors may wear their own masks or a free paper mask will be provided. Cloth masks will also be available for purchase in the Museum Store.
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