The Royal Canadian Air Force is formed.
The history of the Royal Canadian Air Force begins in 1920, when the air force was created as the Canadian Air Force (CAF). In 1924 the CAF was renamed the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) when it was granted the royal title by King George V. The RCAF existed as an independent service until 1968. Prior attempts at forming an air force for Canada were the Canadian Aviation Corps that was attached to the Canadian Expeditionary Force, and a two-squadron Canadian Air Force that was attached to the Royal Air Force.
The modern Royal Canadian Air Force, formerly known as Canadian Forces Air Command, traces its history to the unification of Canada’s armed services in 1968, and is one of three environmental commands of the Canadian Forces. The Royal Canadian Air Force has served in the Second World War, the Korean War, and several United Nations peacekeeping missions and NATO operations. The force maintained a presence in Europe through the second half of the 20th century.
Efforts toward the creation of a Canadian air element continued at the beginning of 1920s. The Canadian government established an Air Board of seven members to regulate and control commercial and civil aviation throughout the Dominion in 1919. The Board was also charged with defending the country from the sky. This included the organization and administration of the Canadian Air Force (CAF), authorized on 18 February 1920. The new organization was given a provisional establishment of 1,340 officers and 31,905 airmen, but it remained as a non-permanent air force. Its only function was to give a 28-day refresher courses every other year to officers and airmen who had served in the RAF during the war. A small headquarters was set up in Ottawa, under the Air Board, and Camp Borden was taken over to serve as the CAF training centre. Operations began there in October 1920, with all equipment, aircraft and hangars donated by the British government.
By the end of March 1922, when refresher training at Camp Borden was suspended, 550 officers and 1,271 airmen had completed the 28-day course.gallery-ww21By 1922, a transition plan for the future organization of the Air Force was needed. It was a period of reorganization for the Canadian forces that culminated with legislation passing on 1 January 1923; the Militia, the Naval Service, and the Air Board were thus incorporated under one Ministry of National Defence.