Return to Rattlesden by Nicolas Trudgian features USAAF B-17 Fortresses returning to base.
Includes Rattleden '45, a limited edition print of Nicolas Trudgian's pencil sketch.
With their crews. the 447th Bomb Group B-17 Fortresses arrived at Rattlesden in late 1943, the East Anglian base from which the group flew all its missions until the end of the war. Entering combat on December 24, the 447th targeted submarine pens, naval installations, ports and missile sites, airfields and marshalling yards in France, Belgium and Germany in preparation for the Normandy invasion.
In the thick of the bomber offensive the 447th took part in the BigWeek raids, supported the D-Day landings, aided the breakthrough at St Lo, pounded enemy positions during the airborne invasion of Holland, and dropped supplies to the Free French forces fighting behind enemy lines.
During the Battle of the Bulge, December 1944-January 1945, the group attacked marshalling yards, railroad bridges and communications centres in the combat zone, later resuming their offensive against targets deep inside Germany. When the war ended the 447th had flown over 257 individual missions, with one of their aircrew, Robert Femoyer, being awarded the Medal of Honor. Theirs was typical of the action-packed campaigns flown by the American Eighth Air Force bomb groups in Europe during WWI I.
Nicolas Trudgian's fine painting shows a battle-damaged B-17G of the 447th on final approach to Rattlesden, returning from a strike against road and rail communications in northern Germany in February, 1945. A P-51 pilot from the 359th Fighter Group, having escorted the injured bomber all the way home, sees his charge safely back to base. In traditional Trudgian style, the painting is full of carefully researched and authentically dated interest bringing a wonderful feel of credibility and reality to the picture. The beautifully painted Suffolk winter landscape, lightly dusted with snow, provides a fascinating contrast to awesome warbirds as they thunder homeward from battle.
Nicolas Trudgian's Limited Edition print, Return to Rattlesden, is signed by eight 447th BG veterans:
T/Sgt John C Bitzer
T/Sgt Norman Bussel
Colonel Edward A Dingivan DFC
First Lt Frank Frison
S/Sgt John H Osbahr
S/Sgt Orlando 'Pete' Petrillo DFC
Sgt Byron Schlag
S/Sgt Don Sherman.
Rattlesden 1945 - matching numbered Companion Print.
Published in 2001 this print sold out some time ago and is becoming increasingly difficult to find.
Condition: this copy has a singe soft 1.5 cm approx handling crease in the right hand white border plus a light mark about 1 cm in the same area - they would not be visible if framed, It is otherwise excellent with strong 'as new' colours, having never been framed and having been stored flat and dark at room temperature. It comes with the original Certificate of Authenticity. Normal price for a perfect example of this print with the matching numbered companion print Rattlesden 1945 would be £150 - £175.
The faults would be difficult to show in a photograph - however the print is covered by our 'No Quibble Guarantee' so if its not as you expected you can return it for a full refund.
Note: the 'Nicolas Trudgian' logo on the bottom right of the image does not appear on the actual print itself.
37 x 23 inches overall including borders. Companion print 35 x 8 inches overall.
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