James John England was born on January 26, 1915 in Wilford, Arkansas, though he later moved to Jackson, Tennessee. He graduated from Lambuth College, located in Jackson, in 1936, and entered the Army Air Forces as an aviation cadet on December 19, 1941. He received his commission on August 8, 1942, and in September of that year, was assigned to the 530th Fighter Squadron of the 311th Fighter Group stationed at Dinjan, India. Flying a North American P-51 Mustang, England scored his first aerial victory on November 25, 1943 when he shot down a twin-engined Kawasaki Ki-45 Nick fighter near Rangoon, Burma. Two days later he downed a Mitsubishi A6M Zeke fighter in the same area. England became an ace during a major air battle over Burma on March 27, 1944, in which he destroyed two Nakajima Ki-43 Oscar fighters and one Nakajima Ki-49 Helen bomber. He was credited with the destruction of a further Ki-43 Oscar and a Nakajima Ki-44 Tojo fighter on May 11th over Meiktila Airdrome. Three days later, on May 14th, he was credited with shooting down another Ki-44 Tojo fighter, bringing his total to 8 confirmed victories. England would not destroy another enemy aircraft until November 18, 1944, when he shot down a Ki-43 Oscar over Shih chian chuang Airfield in China. His last victory was scored over another Ki-43 Oscar, this one destroyed on December 19th southeast of Hankow. Major England returned to the United States the following month. He remained in the Air Force after the close of the war, most of his assignments being in Tactical Air Command and in Tactical Operations. He was promoted to colonel on February 19, 1958, and retired from the Air Force in August, 1968. During his flying career, James J. England was credited with 10 enemy aircraft destroyed, one probably destroyed, and 3 damaged. He was awarded the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Air Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters.
Offered is a pre-printed card, designed and produced especially for American air aces to sign. At the left are small views of 6 aircraft (4 World War II and 2 jets) staggered in a vertical row, printed in blue ink. Across the bottom is printed “A proud salute to ... American fighter Aces”, presented in red ink. In the blank area to the right of the planes is written “Col (Ret) James J England / 530th F. S. 311 FGP / CBI Theater / (China, Burma, India) / 10 A/C destroyed” in five lines. The signature and accompanying information are accomplished in black ink, nicely contrasted against the white background of the card. The back of the card is blank.
This card is in excellent condition, with no folds or damage at all. The printed material is sharp, and the signature is dark and bold. There is no toning or discoloration to mar this interesting piece. Overall measurements are approximately 3.50 x 5.00 inches.