Wikipedia:WikiProject Military history/Peer review/Union Army Balloon Corps

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Union Army Balloon Corps[edit]

I'm very fond of this article but have not been much involved in development. Page creator Magi Media has put some good thought and a heap of time into this important and intriguing subject. With his support, I've asked for this peer review, so we can get some eyes to help this along to the next phase (A-Class or GA status). For my part, I think the article could use a References section at the end, to collect important reading and better support the inline references recently added. I think the layout could use a tiny bit of tweaking. BusterD 23:06, 7 November 2006 (UTC)

Kirill Lokshin[edit]

Quite nice, overall. Some suggestions:

Sorry, but that box is useless. Nothing works!--Magi Media 06:59, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
Is there some particular problem with using it that you've run into? Kirill Lokshin 09:07, 5 December 2006 (UTC)
Mostly everything! If I edit the "captions=" to tailor the info, it refuses to post. Maybe I don't know how to use it..
  • The article seems to begin in media res; the first section deals with the selection of the "Chief Aeronaut" without an explanation of what this position was and whence it had originated being provided. A section of background would probably be useful here.
  • Headings need to be cleaned up, per the MoS; in particular, the use of a leading "the" should be avoided, as should linked terms (which should instead be given below the heading via {{details}}).
  • Dates should be linked to allow date formatting preferences to work correctly.
  • The rump "See also" section should be eliminated; the link isn't a difficult one to work into the text at some point.
  • I would recommend not using "Ibid." in the notes; if the order is later changed, it can become extremely difficult to catch any resulting incorrect back-references.
  • Footnote numbers should be placed after punctuation.

More generally, a few rounds of copyediting to weed out any remaining formatting and wording issues are probably a good idea. Kirill Lokshin 02:17, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Hal Jespersen[edit]

Here are some procedural comments on an article that is otherwise very good. I will expand upon Kirill's comments.

  • You should avoid links to external URLs that do not have a label; in other words, a link surrounded by [ ] single brackets that winds up being displayed as a number. There are two reasons for this: it is a moderate disservice to the reader to not know a brief description of what he is clicking on; in an article with numeric footnotes, these numeric external links are confusing, even though they appear in a slightly different type treatment.
  • You should take care to get the correct ranks for generals, using titles such as Major General where appropriate. Although it is common practice in verbal references to abbreviate their titles simply as "General", we attempt to use a more formal style of writing in Wikipedia.
  • I recently came upon a new template, {{reflist}}, which produces a superior display of Notes when you have a long list such as you do here. See an example in Battle of Antietam.
  • Naval ships are usually listed with their names in italics. I would recommend you use that same convention for airships throughout.
  • In your third paragraph, you list a number of battle names. You should link those to the Wikipedia articles on those battles and I would recommend that you use the Wikipedia names for the battles (for instance, Antietam instead of Sharpsburg), particularly since this article takes a Union viewpoint. (I sometimes do not quarrel with people who use the traditional Southern names in, say, a biography of a Confederate general.)
  • After the section "The troubled Balloon Corps," it would be nice to have a paragraph about the future of this type of aviation, rather than implying that it ceased to exist. For instance, I believe the U.S. Army Signal Corps had responsibility for observation balloons for a time; I could be wrong. In any event, this will give you an opportunity to point to other articles in Wikipedia regarding military ballooning.

Hal Jespersen 19:50, 8 November 2006 (UTC)


I think more citation is called for, but the biggest issue for me is something Hal brought up - what happened to Observation Ballons in the military after 1863? If you believe this article, the US Military never again had anything to do with signal (or any other type) ballons. This article strongly requires at least a paragraph telling us what the future held after the end of the Ballon Corps during the Civil War. old windy bear 15:52, 11 November 2006 (UTC)