For the first time in more than two decades, Dawn Patrol fans can read Volume I of the Indy Squadron Dispatch in its entirety.
As far as Dawn Patrol goes, this is actually pretty special. The first volume of the Dispatch is a time capsule that embodies everything and everyone who helped make the Indy Squadron a reality nearly a quarter century ago.
Issue No. 1, dated July 28, 1989, was little more than an announcement of the next gaming day. Issues 2 and 3 still referred to the organization by its full name, the "Indianapolis Squadron," although that name is never used today. Issue No. 4 is the first to ever be identified as the "official newsletter," and the first time the publication used its longstanding name, the "Dispatch."
Number 4 also contains the full story of Indy's legendary Cambrai Road Balloon Mission, which remains one of the most amazing and bizarre games ever played in Dawn Patrol. Even at that early date in the squadron's life, we knew that mission was something special. And remember, these were days when having 5 missions to your credit ranked your pilot among the best in the state. Given the status of our rosters at the time, this was a very high-stakes game.
These were the days when every issue of ISD was printed on paper and mailed with a 25-cent stamp and the average price of a gallon of gas was $1.12. Out-of-town players could subscribe to the Dispatch for $5 per year, and many did.
Only one known copy exists of each issue from Volume I and the originals are still held inside page protectors within the 3-ring binder that has served as the squadron's official paper archives for years. Each issue was carefully removed, scanned, reduced in file size, and then converted to PDF format. The files were then condensed into two compressed files (Vol 1, No 1-4 and Vol 1, No 5-6) and uploaded to the new Indy Squadron web site's "Downloads" page.
Hopefully, these zip files will be downloaded by several Fits players and local squadron members in order to get more copies into the hands of more people to preserve the archives in more than one place.
Eventually it is hoped that every existing issue of the Indy Squadron Dispatch will be on our "Downloads" page for everyone to see, enjoy, and preserve. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy viewing a small piece of Dawn Patrol history that hasn't been seen for over twenty years.
Red Baron Fight Next on Schedule
Only three players showed up for gaming on Saturday, March 10, so we abandoned ship and cancelled. Indy's next games are slated for April 21st, when Red Baron Fight XXIII will be held.
Michael Morgan won 2 of the last 3 Red Baron Fight events. His chance to become only the second player in history to "three-peat" was lost when he was unable to show up last year.
If Michael were to win it again this year, he would still set several records and become only the second player to win three out of four consecutive RBF's.