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Gallery: Laird LCW-300

Gallery: Laird LCW-300

By Budd Davisson One of the more exciting periods of aviation development was also the darkest period in America’s financial history. A completely contradictory statement to be sure, but one has only to look at the decade beginning in 1929 to see that the roots of American aviation were, for some unknown reason, wildly nurtured […]
Iconic Firepower: SAM SA-2: The Aviator’s Real Enemy

Iconic Firepower: SAM SA-2: The Aviator’s Real Enemy

By Barrett Tillman In May 1960, a CIA-operated Lockheed U-2 reconnaissance aircraft was destroyed in flight over central Russia. From more than 60,000 feet, Francis Gary Powers parachuted into captivity for two years, giving Moscow a huge propaganda victory over President Dwight Eisenhower, who pledged to stop all overflights. The surface to air missile had […]

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Fork-Tailed Oddballs

Fork-Tailed Oddballs

There’s the P-38 Lightning known and loved by generations — a large, yet lithe twin-engine, twin-boom fighter with an informed sense of streamlining that inspired descriptions like “three bullets on a knife.” The P-38 marched through the war generating alphabetical models through “M” totaling around 10,000 copies. But it would be facile to leave the […]
Lightning: The Fork-tailed Devil Revealed

Lightning: The Fork-tailed Devil Revealed

Is there a more identifiable outline in all of fighterdom, WW I to today, than the Lockheed P-38 Lightning? We don’t think so. No other airframe has emblazoned such a clear image in history’s hall of fame. So, what can be said about it that hasn’t already been said? The answer is “nothing.” The facts […]

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Nightvision

Nightvision

The art of the nocturnal photographer As a longtime volunteer photographer for the Experimental Aircraft Association at their annual orgy-of-all-things-aerial in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, Phil High will regularly be seen lying on the ground, getting dramatic angles of an airplane. Or homing-in on the details that make that particular airplane different. His photos are often featured […]
Hey, That’s My Dad!

Hey, That’s My Dad!

A son finds his father in a fading wartime image By Frederick A. Johnsen Part of the enjoyment of viewing WW II photographs is seeing the never-ending panorama of men and women at work during the war. Young and cocky fighter pilots, winsome women serving donuts or riveting bombers, and mechanics lounging for a moment […]

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Gallery: de Havilland  DH84 Dragon

Gallery: de Havilland DH84 Dragon

The Bi-winged Birth of European Air Travel Words and photos by Geoff Jones Many British and Commonwealth air routes were established by airlines using de Havilland’s 6-passenger seat, twin-engine biplane, the DH84 Dragon. The Dragon’s first flight (November 1932) pre-dated the better-known DH89 Dragon Rapide (or Dominie in military service) by two years, although both […]
Iconic Firepower: Aircrew Sidearms

Iconic Firepower: Aircrew Sidearms

The last ditch defense By Barrett Tillman Murvaux, France, September 29, 1918. The mortally wounded American ace slid from his SPAD and staggered into the tall grass. As German infantry approached he drew his Colt M1911 pistol and prepared to die fighting. The Arizonan fired at least three rounds in the dusk encounter before he […]

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Bad Kitty

Bad Kitty

VF-19 “Satan’s Kittens” Chew Up the Enemy “I had well over 1,000 hours of time in the air before I entered combat. Most of that was as an instrument instructor flying the SNJ. Instrument flying really teaches you the finer points of flying an airplane. It also makes you focus and for some reason I […]
Never Stay Still

Never Stay Still

The Battle of Britain’s Youngest Warrior By Rachel Morris As Hitler’s tanks roll into Poland on September 1, 1939, Europe’s worst fears are confirmed: war becomes inevitable. A thousand miles away, a young man celebrates his first solo flight in a de Havilland Tiger Moth, heading to a quiet English country pub with friends to […]
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