Summer Auction 2019 Sale 76
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 7/30/2019
(1915 – 2008) British survivor of "The Great Escape". James was a Royal Air Force officer and second pilot of a Wellington bomber when he was shot down over the Netherlands on 5 June 1940 and taken prisoner. Within a matter of days at Stalag Luft I, James and W/Cdr John "Death" Shore were planning an escape. Digging a highly audacious tunnel, Shore managed to clear the wire and escape, while James was caught in the act and sent directly to the cooler. Over the next five years, he made 13 efforts to escape from various prisons and camps, including Stalag Luft III, the site in March 1944 of the "Great Escape". A central figure in that event, James, together with Peter Fanshawe, was largely responsible for depositing the soil from Tunnel Harry under seat 13 in the camp theater. Following their escape, James and his partner were recaptured while buying train tickets. His partner was later executed by the Gestapo. Spared the execution that fifty others suffered, James was sent instead to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp from which he also escaped using small cutlery to dig an escape tunnel over 110 meters long. On the run for several weeks, he was finally arrested and sent through several other camps before being liberated in May, 1945. Important war-date signed book, an approx. 100pp. 8vo. notebook signed by him on the cover: "F/Lt. B. A. James RAF" and titled in his hand "NOTES ON THE MOSQUITO MK III, MK VI, & XXXIV AND CORRESPONDING MERLIN ENGINES" Approx. 30 of the pages contain sketches and notes by James, including views of the Merlin 23 and 25, Rolls Royce boost control, Mosquito fuel and hydraulic systems, compasses, flight operations, and more. Very good.
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $200.00
Final prices include buyers premium: $325.00
Estimate: $400 - $600
Auction closed on Wednesday, July 31, 2019.
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