Near North Woodstock in Grafton County, New Hampshire — The American Northeast (New England)
The Night the Bomber Crashed
January 14, 1942: the reality of World War II was brought home to New Hampshire when a U.S. Army Air Corps B-18A bomber strayed off course and crashed in the White Mountains, killing two crewmembers and severely injuring the other five.
Heading back to base in Chicopee Falls, MA, from an antisubmarine patrol, the bomber crew ran into blizzard conditions. Gale force winds, blinding snow, and freezing temperatures iced up windows, disabled instruments, and affected air spend and altitude. Lights glimpsed through a brief opening in the clouds thought to be Providence, RI, were actually, Concord, NH! The next thing the crew saw were evergreen trees, and the plane slammed into the snow-covered slope of Mount Waternomee.
Despite treacherous winter conditions, the efforts of the community saved the lives of the five crewmen who survived the crash. Thanks to the Woodrow Kantner Foundation, the site is now a memorial and is a protected heritage site on the White Mountain National Forest. Please treat it with the respect it deserves: removing artifacts or disturbing
For more information and exhibits, visit the Upper Pemigewasset Historical Society on Church Street in Lincoln.
At 7:45 PM, North Woodstock residents heard a plane flying dangerously low, then three explosions rocked the night. Did it crash or was it dropping bombs? A search party from Lincoln and Woodstock struggled up the mountain through thigh-deep snow in -25F temperatures, not knowing what they would find.
A mile from the crash site, they were astonished to see three injured airmen staggering towards them. Closer to the wreckage were two more, alive but critically injured. Two others were dead. Soon after, a larger team arrived with local volunteers, medical and White Mountain National Forest personnel, and 30 lumbermen from a nearby camp to clear the way for rescue toboggans. At 2 AM, the first three airmen reached the safety of the highway. Twelve grueling hours later, exhausted rescuers delivered the other two into waiting ambulances.
Lacerations on head/facial abrasions; spinal injuries
2nd Lt. Woodrow A. Kantner, Co-pilot
Fractured left forearm/wrist and broken right ankle; lacerations on head/facial abrasions
2nd Lt. Fletcher M. Craig, Navigator
Lacerations above right eye, face, and on right leg
PFC Richard G. Chubb, Mechanic
North Billerica, MA
Laceration on legs and right side of face; broken jaw
PFC Robert P. Picard, Gunner
Fractured spine/hip; fractured arm; internal and head injuries; multiple hemorrhages
PVT Raymond F. Lawrence, Gunner
Deceased; body found in rear section of bomber
PVT Noah W. Phillips, Bombardier
Deceased; body found in rear section of bomber
Long-term protection of this site is the goal of a partnership between the US Forest Service, the Kantner Foundation, and the Upper Pemigewasset Historical Society.
Erected by Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Topics. This memorial is listed in these topic lists: Air & Space • Disasters • War, World II. A significant historical date for this entry is January 14, 1942.
Location. 44° 2.411′ N, 71° 47.541′ W. Marker is near North Woodstock, New Hampshire, in Grafton County. Memorial can be reached from Lost River Road (New Hampshire Route 112) 3.6 miles west of Sawyer Highway (New Hampshire Route 118), on the left when traveling west. Marker is located near the east end of the Beaver Brook Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: North Woodstock NH 03262, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Wildwood (approx. 4 miles away); Woodstock World War Two Memorial (approx. 5.2 miles away); Clark's Bridge (approx. 5.2 miles away); Quinten E. Mulleavey (approx. 5.2 miles away); Borasaurus (approx. 5.3 miles away); The First Passenger Carrying Aerial Tramway in North America (approx. 5.3 miles away); The Bear Show (approx. 5.3 miles away); N.H. (approx. 5.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in North Woodstock.
Also see . . .
1. The World War II Bomber that Crashed In New Hampshire. New England Historical Society website entry:
One of New England's most unique memorials to those who died in World War II is found on Mount Waternomee of a B-18 bomber that crashed in New Hampshire. Raymond Lawrence of Worcester, Mass., and Noah Phillipps of Fayetteville, Ark., died there while on a mission on January 14, 1942. The two men were part of the crew of a B-18 assigned to patrol the coast of New England. In those days, German U-boats were harassing merchant ships, sinking them with abandon. (Submitted on April 12, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Mt. Waternomee B-18 Bomber Crash Site. Scenic NH website entry
(This link presents detailed photographs of the crash site and plane remnants.)
Five weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor, a Douglas B-18 (Submitted on April 12, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
3. Mt. Waternomee B18 Bomber Crash Site. Hike New England website entry:
This link presents map and detailed directions for hiking to crash site from the trailhead and marker. (Submitted on April 12, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Credits. This page was last revised on August 11, 2021. It was originally submitted on April 12, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 354 times since then and 97 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on April 12, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.