How many planes did Billy Bishop shoot down?

6/11/2013 • Ask Mr. History

Okay, so how many German airplane were really shot down by Canadian "Ace," Billy Bishop? If it’s going to start a U.S.-Canadian war you don’t need to answer.

All the best,


? ? ?

Dear Fred,
In response to a similar request from a previous reader, I have done a pretty detailed study of German losses against Billy Bishop’s claims with No.60 Squadron, though I have yet to cover all his claims while commanding No.85 Squadron. As things stand now, however, I have only been able to find one German loss with 60 Squadron and only one or two for 85—and even some of those require discounting a squadron mate or two’s claims in the same action. I can only conclude that Bishop’s ratio of 72 credited victories to corresponding enemy losses is one of the most disproportionately low in the RFC and RAF.



Jon Guttman
Research Director
World History Group
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