Nachtjagd Combat Archive Series


 

We’ve created this page to hopefully answer any questions you might have about this landmark series which is one of the largest aviation publishing projects ever produced.

 

FAQs

What is the series about?

At the core of this project is comprehensive coverage in detailed reference form of;

the operational deployment of the German night fighter force – the Nachtjagdverbände – against British, American, and Soviet forces on all fronts,

The German Flak claims against RAF Bomber Command at night during World War Two.

Some 6,000 German night fighter claims, over 2,100 Flak claims and almost 800 Flak searchlight claims fully documented and 95 % of all Luftwaffe night fighter and Flak claims matched to Bomber Command losses for the first time.

How big is the series going to be?

We estimate that the series will run to between 12-15 volumes.  Each volume will be 128 pages and retail at £20 per volume.  In total there are around 1.3 million words and over 1200 original wartime photos, some 70% previously unpublished.

NCA1943part1520

 

How frequently will they be published?

The plan is to release one every two – three months, so on average around five volumes per year.

How is this series different from the Nachtjagd War Diaries?

NJWD only covered night fighter claims (partly based upon what is now known as falsified and incomplete records) -NCA has ironed out all these ‘fake’ claims, documented many hitherto unknown claims, and also covers all known Flak and Flak searchlight claims against BC. NJWD was a breakthrough in historiography of night airwar in WWII, NCA can be considered the final word on the subject.

Is it of interest to RAF Bomber Command historians and families?

Definitely.  This series accurately pinpoints the crash locations of over 90% of all Bomber Command losses in mainland Europe. It also identifies in most cases which German pilot and/or Flak crew shot them down.  There are also hundreds of new first hand accounts by those German pilots of the last moments of the bombers that they shot down.  By identifying the RAF bombers, the authors have for the first time, provided eye witness accounts to the last moments of thousands of Bomber Command aircrew.  The series also includes hundreds of uncensored photos of the wreckage of identified RAF Bombers, many previously unpublished.

Why does it start in 1943?

This was a publishing decision simply to help the series get off to a good start in terms of sales and public reaction.  1943 was the most critical year in the RAF Bombing offensive and is therefore of interest to more people.   The plan at the moment is to release 1943 Parts 1, 2 and 3.  Then we will revert back to 1940 and proceed chronologically from there.  The series is divided into years which are then subdivided into parts.

What makes this series unique?

The authors have spent 20 years, and over 25,000 man hours, on this project.  Theo is fluent in English and German and is thus able to cover both sides, gaining access both to public archives and to most private collections on the night air-war around the world. Rod is knowledgeable and experienced with available German, Anglo-American, and British Commonwealth archival sources. By clever use of all available German records and British intelligence records (incl. decrypted Enigma -ULTRA plus (decoded) transcripts and analyses of intercepted Tagjagd and Nachtjagd Wireless Telephony (W/T) and Radio Telephony (R/T) traffic) the authors are finally able to tell the virtually complete story about the sacrifice of so many young men fighting in the most intensive night air war campaign the world has ever witnessed;  shedding complete light on the why/how/where of virtually all BC and NJ combat losses in WWII. This will hopefully provide relatives with a wider context and understanding of their loved ones’ sacrifice.

How is the information on German Nachtjagd losses presented in the NCA series?

The authors have, at an early stage in the project, contemplated presenting separate Nachtjagd loss info for each individual night (presented similar to the BC losses in the NCA series) but have decided not to, because basic info in this manner has already been published in several recent German-language works. The information on Nachtjagd losses presented in the NCA series must be seen as complimentary to the information presented in these German works. Theo and Rod have included basic details on all known/documented Nachtjagd operational losses within the narratives for each night as an integral part of the texts, which helps put the German Nachtjagd losses in perspective within the unfolding of each night’s actions. Whilst doing this, they have corrected hundreds of entries in the German language works and added a couple of hundred new ones from hitherto untapped primary sources such as German Nachtjagd Flugbücher/Leistungsbücher, German veterans’ accounts, ULTRA, ADIK reports etc. In this process, the authors have, in many cases, accurately tied the German Nachtjagd losses to BC air gunners and Allied night fighters for the first time.
For volumes covering the 1945 period, supplementary Appendices detailing known Nachtjagd aircraft attrition have been prepared, since they often include new data not found in existing literature.

 

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Terms and abbreviations

The authors have prepared a comprehensive list of terms and abbreviations used in the series.  Rather than printing them in every book, we are publishing them here in the form of a downloadable PDF.  NCAGlossary