Event Title

Pigeons, the Birds of War

Mentor 1

Nigel Rothfels

Start Date

16-4-2021 12:00 AM

Description

War heroes are often thought of as soldiers that risked their lives, scientists that created new weapons, or dogs that kept their humans safe in battle. Rarely do the words war hero and pigeon associate with one another. Messenger birds have been long used throughout history as a form of communication; however, in more recent decades pigeons have been perceived as dirty or “rats with wings.” The importance of messenger pigeons and their contributions to war have been hidden throughout history. Pigeons played a crucial role during the first and second world Wars for both sides. Newspaper articles bring to light the many unknown stories of bravery many pigeons have endured. The pigeons even lost legs, had bullet wounds, or even died trying to complete their mission. The use of pigeons to carry messages may be considered old technology, but it took on a practical role while the front lines and trenches of wartime were in combat. The training of these pigeons was left only to experts and was rigorous for both the trainers and the birds. This paper describes the history of messenger pigeons and their importance to communication in wartime through the story of a pigeon named Cher Ami.

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Apr 16th, 12:00 AM

Pigeons, the Birds of War

War heroes are often thought of as soldiers that risked their lives, scientists that created new weapons, or dogs that kept their humans safe in battle. Rarely do the words war hero and pigeon associate with one another. Messenger birds have been long used throughout history as a form of communication; however, in more recent decades pigeons have been perceived as dirty or “rats with wings.” The importance of messenger pigeons and their contributions to war have been hidden throughout history. Pigeons played a crucial role during the first and second world Wars for both sides. Newspaper articles bring to light the many unknown stories of bravery many pigeons have endured. The pigeons even lost legs, had bullet wounds, or even died trying to complete their mission. The use of pigeons to carry messages may be considered old technology, but it took on a practical role while the front lines and trenches of wartime were in combat. The training of these pigeons was left only to experts and was rigorous for both the trainers and the birds. This paper describes the history of messenger pigeons and their importance to communication in wartime through the story of a pigeon named Cher Ami.