WWI Letters: “Aeroplanes Are Flying Around Over Here Like Birds”

This letter reprinted in A History of Shenandoah County, Virginia was actually written for publication! Private Russell T. Hupp penned the letter and sent it to the editor of The Valley newspaper. It gives details that folks back home would have found interesting, including observations on the agriculture in France and comparisons to the crops and farms in the Shenandoah Valley.

Similar to the previous weeks, we’ve included a few historical notes on World War I after the complete primary source to give a little background and historical depth to the letter.

The Letter

Somewhere in France

A.E.F., Sept. 17, 1918, Continue reading

Historic Aircraft in Tucson, AZ

Bonus post…I’ve been traveling.

Some of you may have noticed that the weekly post (this month featuring the Normandy Invasion) was late in appearing last week.  No, delayed posting is not going to be my habit, and perhaps you will forgive me if when you see where I was with no computer access!

PIMA AIR & SPACE MUSEUM…and….DAVIS-MONTHAN AF BASE AIRCRAFT BONEYARD in Tucson, Arizona.

Here’s some photos and a little journaling –

Pima Air and Space Museum

Pima Air and Space Museum

This A-10 Thunderbolt II is displayed in the main hanger.

This A-10 Thunderbolt II is displayed in the main hanger.

 

Look at all these planes!

Look at all these planes!

Beautifully restored B-17 Bomber from WWII

Beautifully restored B-17 Bomber from WWII

There are over 300 planes here at the Pima Air and Space Museum.  I had a day and a half at the facility and could have spent longer.  (I like to read every sign in a museum…not always the best idea when on a limited time schedule).

One of Miss Sarah's favorite WWII aircraft - THE P-51 Mustang.

One of Miss Sarah’s favorite WWII aircraft – THE P-51 Mustang.

I really like World War II era aircraft and this museum had an abundance of these displays.

The Helicopter Line

The Helicopter Line

The entire museum facility covers about 80 acres!  Aside from the hangers there are hundreds of aircraft displayed outside.  I highly recommend the tram around the property as a way to see most of the outdoor display; our tour guide was informative and I learned quite a bit.  Later I went back and took photos of specific aircraft.

Pima Air and Space Museum is the largest non-profit, non-government-owned flight museum in the United States.  They have over 300 aircraft in pristine facilities or outdoor locations.  The museum volunteers and staff were very friendly and informative.

Now, onto the Air Force Boneyard – accessible to civilians by tour bus!  Here, military aircraft are preserved for future use, salvaged for unique parts, or ultimately crunched after all useable parts are removed.  Applause to the Air Force for their penny-pinching and resourcefulness in an era of tight military budgeting.

This plane and the others in the background could fly again.

This plane and the others in the background could fly again.

These large transport planes are truly in the boneyard...they will never fly again and are being stripped of useful equipment needed by aircraft still in service.

These large transport planes are truly in the boneyard…they will never fly again and are being stripped of useful equipment needed by aircraft still in service.

More planes in the boneyard.

More planes in the boneyard.

I thoroughly enjoyed my sight-seeing time in Tucson, AZ, and I hope that if you are in the area you will stop by the museum or tour the base.  If you love historic aircraft, planes, or flight technology this is a place you may never wish to leave.

Beauty of Flight!

Beauty of Flight!

There is something wonderful about flying.  Defense, patriotism, pleasure, recreation, experiment, challenge, adventure, dream…so many aspects in the idea of flight.  The  sculpture at the Pima Air and Space Museum defines this idea simply: Beauty of Flight.

Your Historian,

Miss Sarah

For your information: http://www.pimaair.org/