- 39th Troop Carrier Squadron

- 40th Troop Carrier Squadron

- 41st Troop Carrier Squadron

- 46th Troop Carrier Squadron


The Headquarters of the 317th Troop Carrier Group transferred from Townsville to Port Moresby on 30 September 1943.

On 10 December 1944, C-47 Dakota, #42-24215, "The Fireball Mail"of the 41st Troop Carrier Squadron, of the 317 Transport Group, went missing on a flight from Ward's airfield in Port Moresby to Hollandia via Dobodura. The wreckage of the aircraft was not discovered until 1979 at 10,000 feet in the Finesterre Mountains about 20 miles north of Nadzab.

The men of the 39th Troop Carrier Squadron of the 317th Troop Carrier Group of the 5th Air Force initially lived at Camp Muckley, about one mile away from Archerfield airfield. The enlisted men lived in open barracks while the officers had partitioned quarters. New barracks were built for the 39th Troop Carrier Squadron at Archerfield Airfield beside Beatty Road as seen in the photo below.


The new barracks at Archerfield Airfield for the 39th Troop Carrier
Squadron can be seen at the far right of this photo dated Aug 1943


The 39th Troop Carrier Squadron at Archerfield used Cargo Gliders which were capable of carrying 3,800 lbs of freight.


Crash of a C-47 Dakota of the 40th Troop Carrier Squadron
in Cleveland Bay near Townsville
on 7 August 1943 with the loss of 27 lives


Crash of a B-17 Flying Fortress
of the 46th Troop Carrier Squadron
at Bakers Creek near Mackay in Queensland
on 14 June 1943 with the loss of 40 lives


I am interested in details of any aircraft crashes
involving the 317th Troop Carrier Group in Australia



The Forgotten Fifth
A Classic Photographic Chronology of the
Fifth Air Force in Action in the Pacific in WW2

By Michael Claringbould


Can anyone help me with more information?


"Australia @ War" WWII Research Products

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 Peter Dunn OAM 2020


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This page first produced 14 June 1999

This page last updated 04 Apr 2022