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Special recognition must be made to my mother, Janet A. Harkness, who first discovered, uncovered and read my grandfather’s wartime diaries hidden in plain sight for almost a century in the living room display case. She immediately recognized their value not only to our family but to society at large and urged my father and me to transcribe and edit them for publication. Without her discovery, this book would in all likelihood never have seen the light of day.

In addition, I wish to thank Errol Martyn and David Duxbury of the Aviation Historical Society of New Zealand for the generous editorial assistance they provided regarding New Zealand's early aviation and DEH's post-war aviation histories. Their help and research was invaluable and very much appreciated. I wish also to thank Gina Fletcher of the Old Boys Association of Nelson College for the great information she sent on DEH and his father, George A. Harkness’, scholastic histories. Special thanks also go to writing teacher and friend Joie Hinden whose guidance in the writing of this book was especially valuable. 

A special note of thanks goes to our wives and significant others, Janet, Yatsumi, Kathleen, Carla, and Beth, whose steadfast support and encouragement were most helpful and so very much needed. We could not have endured the long hours of transcription, communication, research and writing without the love and guidance they so warmly and willingly provided us in the course of completing this project.

Most importantly, I wish to express my deepest thanks to my brothers, Jeffrey T. Harkness, Timothy D. Harkness, Christopher W. Harkness and our father, Donald E. Harkness Jr. for their tireless assistance in helping me scan, collate and transcribe the huge volume of diaries, letters, photographs, sketches and newspaper clippings into digital format.  The extensive and creative efforts by Dad and brother Jeff in providing additional research, editing, PowerPoint presentations, proposals, marketing and much more in the writing of this book proved of inestimable worth and is especially appreciated.  Special thanks also go to brother Tim for restoring 120 century-old photographs and for applying his highly skilled artistic sense in creating the book’s cover design. And brother Chris provided months of transcription, and his singular approach to research was as useful as it was creative.  This book could not have come together without the contributions and frequent long-distance collaborations of this highly proficient and dedicated band of brothers.

Historical facts used in this book came from these primary sources (in no particular order):

Bomber Pilot 1916-1918, by C.P.O. Bartlett
The Airship, by Basil Collier
The Zeppelin Fighters, by Arch Whitehouse
Naval Aviation in the First World War, It’s Impact and Influence, by R.D. Layman
The History of New Zealand Aviation, by Ross Ewing and Ross MacPherson
War in the Air 1914 – 45, by William Murray
Thrilling Deeds of British Airmen, by Eric Wood
Dornier, A Brief History of the Dornier Company (no author specified)
Smithy, The Life of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, by Ian Mackersey
The Zeppelin in Combat, by Douglas H. Robinson
The Zeppelin Base Raids, Germany 1914, by Ian Castle
Titanic, An Illustrated History, by Don Lynch
Knights of the Air, by Ezra Bowen
Sopwith 1½ Strutter, Vols 1 and 2, by J.M. Bruce
Fokker Dr.1 In Action, by Heinz J. Nowarra
Forums: “The Aerodrome”, “Great War”, and “Cross and Cockade”
Newspapers: Evening Post, Auckland Times, Daily Telegraph, London Gazette
Flightglobal/Archive, Journal of the Royal Aero Club

UK National Archive, Kew, London
War Against the Weak, by Edwin Black
A Tale of Two ‘Villages’, Vineland and Skillman, by Michael Nevins
The Melvill Family Roll of Honor, by E. J. Joubert de la Ferté
The War in the Air, Vols 1 and 2, by Sir Walter Raleigh and H. A. Jones
Bombers 1914-1919, by Kenneth Munson
Airmen or Noahs, Fairplay for Our Airmen, by Murray F. Seuter
Images of Aviation, The Sikorsky Legacy, by Sergei I. Sikorsky

Bruce Harkness

Photo credits: Unless otherwise credited, all photographs were taken by D.E. Harkness using a collapsible Vest Pocket Kodak (VPK) camera, and he often developed the film himself in makeshift darkrooms wherever he was stationed.  A few pictures he acquired through trades with friends.  These photos today are the property of the Harkness family.

Cover photo: Flight Sub-Lieutenant Harkness examining a new dual-seat “fighting” Sopwith 1½ Strutter while on his way to Brooklands to pick up an identical machine that will soon become his personal mount.  The photo was taken June 1, 1916, at Dover Aerodrome.