The Ira M. Britton papers consist of letters, photographs, certificates and notebooks created and collected by American serviceman
Ira Britton during World War II. Britton served in both the the Royal Canadian Air Force and the United States Navy. Together,
the photographs and letters describe the experience of Americans who served in the RCAF.
Ira Martini Britton was born in Franklin, Pennsylvania in 1920. After receiving a letter from an American friend who had joined
the Royal Canadian Air Force, Britton decided to enlist as well. He left for Canada in the fall of 1941. By December, he had
washed out of the program and returned to the United States. He then enlisted in the United States Navy where he worked in
aircraft maintenance. On November 19, 1945, Britton was honorably discharged from the Navy with the rank of Aviation Machinist's
Mate First Class.When Canada joined the war on September 10, 1939, Americans who wished to fight before the United States entered the war got
their opportunity in the Royal Canadian Air Force. When joining the RCAF, recruits were required to pledge alleigance to the
British monarch. For American recruits, this pledge could mean forfeiture of their American citizenship. In order to work
around this issue, the Canadian government passed an Order in Council that allowed foreign recruits to instead agree to obey
RCAF rules and discipline during the course of the war. When the United States entered the war, many Americans returned home
to serve in the United States military.
0.42 Linear Feet
All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian.
Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended
to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE. Advance notice required for access.