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Old 29th April 2007, 13:02
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Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Hello gents

According to the USAAF and generally US Army Signal Corps responsible, among others, for WWII era photographic service of the armed forces activities there was Porto Farma airfield in Tunisia. According to the Americans this Luftwaffe operated base was situated between Bizerte and Tunis. Maybe I am wrong, correct me if needed, but what they called then "Porto Farma airfield" it is hard to find in the other data dedicated to North African campaign. Do you know if various names of this air base were in use then? Did the Germans call this airfield in another way?

In June 1943 the US Army Signal Corps took big pictorial of the Luftwaffe wreckage at Porto Farma airfield as the Americans called this place. As can be seen at this pictorial it was a base of all Luftwaffe types of the aircraft. I posted below one of those pics. I would be thankful for your expertise what “Porto Farma” was and for whom, in what terminology (Allied? Tunisian? German?).

Regards

E.



Last edited by Empiricist; 29th April 2007 at 13:33.
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Old 29th April 2007, 18:23
Gianandrea Bussi Gianandrea Bussi is offline
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

In the background you may see a Fw.190 that it seems to be KM+EY, found by Allied troops at El Alouina airport according to "Fw.190 in North Africa" by A.Arthy and M. Jessen. In this book (pag. 170) there is a picture of the 190 with a Ju.52 visible behind it: on the rudder there is a tactical markings that could be "T2", so it should be the same Ju.52 visible in your picture.

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Gianandrea Bussi
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Old 29th April 2007, 18:51
Alex Smart Alex Smart is offline
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Hi,
Although logged in I still cannot see the attached picture. Why ?

Alex
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Old 29th April 2007, 19:50
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

This may help. It's a piece of an RAF intelligence map I found at the National Archives (don't ask for the file reference, I scanned the paper version into my computer ages ago and the original is … errrrr … somewhere).

The whole map is way past the size limit for posting attached files to this forum, so I've cropped it to the area that was asked about.
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Old 30th April 2007, 01:27
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Hi friends

Teamwork operates very well, as we can see. Thank you very much for all your replies. Perhaps commonly we will discover what the Americans meant as a “Porto Farma airfield” in Tunisia. Luftwaffe types spectrum that can be seen at this so-called Porto Farma is wide. There are at least Ju 52, Hs 129, Fw 190, Bf 109, Me 323 and Ju 88.

Gianandrea: Fortunately the US signaler took a photo of Fw 190 you mentioned. I am posting it for you for better thinking where are we when we talk “Porto Farma” according to the US Army Signal Corps. Maybe this is it -- Tunis-El Aouina (as the RAF's map indicates) or Tunis-El Alouina as the book quoted informs.



Just in case am posting one more pic from this airfield. Perhaps it will be good indicator as well.



Nick: Valuable and useful map. Thank you very much. Thanks to it perhaps we are closer to discover what the GIs meant as a “Porto Farma”. If the dots mark various class airfields we do have for our choice as follows: Tunis-El Aouina (Gianandrea's info), Tunis-Foche Ville, Gamrat, Ariana, La Marsa, Sebala II, Kassar Said, Protville-Utique, Protville I, Protville II, Mateur Bel Aid, Mateur II, Bir Gueniche, Ferryville, perhaps also Djedeida NW, Djedeida SE, El Bathan.

Maybe LW units markings will help LW fans to recognize this place for sure and a hundred percent though I think that Gianandrea may be very close of truth.

One more time thank you very much for your interesting and time.

Best regards

E.
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Old 30th April 2007, 02:38
Amrit1 Amrit1 is offline
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

With Porto meaning port, it may be a coastal airfield. May narrow down the search. I've found Porto Farina half way between Tunis and Bizerte.

EDIT - I've just realised that it may be a typo based on an unclear map. The attached map shows Porto Farina (but have a look at what it looks like).
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Old 30th April 2007, 04:54
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Quote:
Originally Posted by Amrit1 View Post
With Porto meaning port, it may be a coastal airfield. May narrow down the search. I've found Porto Farina half way between Tunis and Bizerte.

EDIT - I've just realised that it may be a typo based on an unclear map. The attached map shows Porto Farina (but have a look at what it looks like).
It sounds very logically. We do have a problem now. There are two good looking versions but Porto Farina is not in the same place as El Aouina alias El Alouina.

Somehow or other -- thank you very much to all for fighting against small historic problem.

Best regards

E.
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Old 30th April 2007, 23:40
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Quote:
Originally Posted by Empiricist View Post
Valuable and useful map ... If the dots mark various class airfields...
Here is the explanation of the symbols...
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Old 1st May 2007, 12:15
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

Nick

Thank you very much. Thanks to you we are able to narrow research field. According to the map legend the airfields I selected and listed above are as follows:

Tunis-El Aouina – airfield suitable for heavy bombers

Tunis-Foche Ville – landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

Gamart – emergency landing ground, unsuitable as an operational base

Ariana - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

La Marsa - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

Sebala II - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

Kassar Said - emergency landing ground, unsuitable as an operational base

Protville-Utique - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

Protville I - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

Protville II - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

Mateur Bel Aid - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

Mateur II - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

Bir Gueniche - emergency landing ground, unsuitable as an operational base

Ferryville - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters

Djedeida NW - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

Djedeida SE - landing ground, suitable for medium bombers

El Bathan - landing ground, few or no facilities, suitable for fighters


If Me 323 took-off and landed at the place called by the Americans “Porto Farma” it had to be big airfield with long and well-hardened runway(s). In this context El Aouina (or El Alouina) seems to be very good theory and Gianandrea may be right. It may well be medium bombers base as well none the less El Aouina is the most probable place.

One more time thank you very much.

Best regards

E.


PS.
Below Me 323 at the airfield we are talking about.

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Old 1st May 2007, 14:31
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Re: Tunisia, Porto Farma airfield

One more interesting thing. If we look at the map of North African campaign it is clearly seen that El Alouina is not the US sector of operations. Theoretically it was British sector. I found an event of 325th FG which took place on August 10th, 1943. It was very good opportunity to take a photo of the LW aero schrott. Maybe US Army Signal Corps is wrong with its description of this pictorial? Or the American trips took place many times to this place also before August?

The event was as follows and everybody can read it under http://www.325thfg.org/325his.htm

A welcome interlude in the ceaseless round of combat missions was the visit 10 August by Bob Hope and his company, including Frances Langford, Jack Pepper, and Tony Romano. A delegation from the 325th Fighter Group met the actors at El Alouina Airport in Tunis and flew them back to Mateur in a B-25 bomber. After lunch in the Group Headquarters mess hall, the Hope company presented a performance on a temporary stage behind the big Nissen hut chapel. The visit of these entertainers was one of the biggest morale builders the group had had since leaving the States.
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