American Aviation Historical Society

American Aviation Historical Society The Society is dedicated to the preservation of American aviation history by collecting and preserving a written and visual record of the planes, people, places and events involved in the development of this aviation heritage.
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The Society was founded in 1956 and welcomes everyone interested in American aviation history. Our membership includes model builders, historians, educators, writers and aviation enthusiasts. All eras of American aviation history are covered - WWI, the Golden Age (1920-1939), WWII, post-war developments, Korea, Vietnam and current developments. Military, Commercial Transport and General aviation aspects are covered in detail.

The Society was founded in 1956 and welcomes everyone interested in American aviation history. Our membership includes model builders, historians, educators, writers and aviation enthusiasts. All eras of American aviation history are covered - WWI, the Golden Age (1920-1939), WWII, post-war developments, Korea, Vietnam and current developments. Military, Commercial Transport and General aviation aspects are covered in detail.

Mission: The American Aviation Historical Society is dedicated to the preservation and dissemination of the rich heritage of American aviation. Our purpose is to collect and preserve a written and visual record of the planes, people, places and events involved in the development and expansion of American aviation. It achieves these educational goals, in part, through the quarterly publication of a Journal, and FlightLine newsletter on the AAHS Web site.

Operating as usual

Aviation Fact Friday:During the 1930s, the National Air Races were the leading air races in America. Rather than caterin...
08/08/2020

Aviation Fact Friday:
During the 1930s, the National Air Races were the leading air races in America. Rather than catering to the aviation industry, the National Air Races catered to the general public. This meant that the National Air Races were organized as a spectator sport.

The National Air Races consisted of multiple competitions. The Thompson Trophy Race was a closed-course event, which meant that the aircraft competed directly against each other. This direct competition was introduced with the goal of drawing a larger audience due to the increased level of action. Additionally, the Bendix Trophy Race was introduced as a long distance race, but it failed to achieve comparable levels of popularity to action packed closed-course events.

All in all, while the National Air Races offered pilots the opportunity to attain fame, the National Air Races also threatened pilots with the possibility of suffering fatal accidents. In fact, even expert pilots perished during air races, including multiple winners of the Thompson Trophy.
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Event pictured: the National Air Races of 1934
Art by: Nixon Galloway

Aviation Fact Friday:The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, nicknamed the “Warthog,” is the premier close air suppo...
07/31/2020

Aviation Fact Friday:
The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, nicknamed the “Warthog,” is the premier close air support aircraft of the United States Air Force. It was initially adopted in 1975, and has been utilized ever since. In fact, the Air Force recently reported that they expect to continue using the Warthog until 2040.

The Warthog is equipped with a GAU-8/A seven-barrel Gatling gun and numerous other bombs and missiles. While this weaponry was initially designed for Cold War era conflicts, the Warthog’s close air support capabilities complement the Air Force’s current counterterrorism mission.

The Warthog is also extremely durable, and is capable of completing missions from airfields near the front line. In addition to its durability, the Warthog unit cost is relatively cheap when compared to recently developed aircraft. This mix of cost effectiveness and durability has ensured the Warthog’s extended lifetime in the United States Air Force’s arsenal.
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Aircraft pictured: Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II
Art by: Henk Uitslag

Aviation Fact Friday:The H-4 Hercules flying boat, which was manufactured by the Hughes Aircraft Company, weighed four h...
07/24/2020

Aviation Fact Friday:
The H-4 Hercules flying boat, which was manufactured by the Hughes Aircraft Company, weighed four hundred thousand pounds and was the largest flying boat in American aviation history. Due to the use of wood as the main construction material of this aircraft, the aircraft was nicknamed the “Spruce Goose” by the public. However, this name is misleading, because the Hercules was actually made out of birch rather than spruce.

The H-4 Hercules was initially designed during the Second World War as a transport aircraft. However, it was incomplete by the war’s end and was never utilized by the military. Yet, production was continued under the management of the Hughes Aircraft Company.

In 1947, Howard Hughes piloted the H-4 Hercules’ first and only flight. After finishing the mile long flight, the aircraft was eventually retired to a climate-controlled hangar. Currently, the H-4 Hercules is displayed in the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum.
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Aircraft pictured: H-4 Hercules
Photography by: Lloyd Jones

Aviation Fact Friday:More B-24 Liberators were produced by American factories than any other aircraft during the Second ...
07/18/2020

Aviation Fact Friday:
More B-24 Liberators were produced by American factories than any other aircraft during the Second World War. Designed by Consolidated Aircraft to serve as a long range bomber, the B-24 boasted a superior range, speed, and payload when compared to America’s other prominent bomber, the B-17.

The B-24 also possessed the capability to complete a multitude of mission types. Most notably, B-24s carried out many successful attacks on oil refineries and production facilities. Yet, B-24s were also utilized for supply missions, U-boat deterrence, and shipping route protection.

However, flying this aircraft was a dangerous task. Not only was the B-24 dubbed the “flying coffin,” due to there only being one exit on the aircraft, B-24s were also forced to endure attacks from enemy fighters and enemy anti-aircraft weapons. In fact, it was expected that a bomber crew would be shot down after an average of 8-12 missions. This combination of threats and high probability of mission failure ultimately highlighted the bravery and courage demonstrated by B-24 crews.
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Aircraft pictured: Consolidated B-24 Liberator
Photography by: Bill Norton

The American Aviation Historical Society has launched an Instagram presence! If you have an Instagram account and would ...
07/11/2020

The American Aviation Historical Society has launched an Instagram presence! If you have an Instagram account and would love to see the amazing art and photography of the AAHS archives, follow us there! Our username is @americanaviationhistory. Additionally, we will be posting a weekly “Aviation Fact Friday” on our Facebook and Instagram accounts!
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Aircraft pictured: Grumman F-14 Tomcat
Photographer: USN

The first “Aviation Fact Friday”:Major George Preddy was one of the greatest American aces of the Second World War. He w...
07/11/2020

The first “Aviation Fact Friday”:

Major George Preddy was one of the greatest American aces of the Second World War. He was born in North Carolina and was introduced to aviation as a barnstormer prior to the war. After being denied enlistment by the Navy, Preddy was accepted into the Army Air Corps.

Initially based in the Pacific flying P-40s, Preddy was soon transferred to the European campaign after recovering from an almost fatal training accident in Australia. It was in Europe where his victory tally began to grow exponentially, and where he ultimately earned 27.5 aerial victories. Astoundingly, he scored six of those victories in one day. For this feat of heroism and skill, Preddy was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.

Ironically, just as his military aviation career began with an accident, it also ended with an accident. Unfortunately, Preddy was fatally wounded by allied anti-aircraft fire on Christmas Day in 1944. However, his legacy still survives. The blue nose art and the inscription “Cripes A’ Mighty” will always be associated with Major George Preddy and his mastery of aerial warfare.
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Aircraft pictured: P-51 Mustang (Flown by Major George Preddy)
Art by: Sonny Schug

We're gearing up for our Annual Meeting, Feb 15-17th in Tucson, AZ!  Plan on joining us for an immersive aviation histor...
01/30/2019

We're gearing up for our Annual Meeting, Feb 15-17th in Tucson, AZ! Plan on joining us for an immersive aviation history experience! Special restoration project tours, museum walk-throughs, boneyard views and lunch with aviation enthusiasts- --bring along the camera and a friend, and enjoy the conversation and history! Go to the website at www.aahs-online.org for signup and more info!

AAHS friends and aviation buffs! We can design aviation vehicles that can go mach 5 but can't keep up with our FB page! ...
01/04/2019

AAHS friends and aviation buffs! We can design aviation vehicles that can go mach 5 but can't keep up with our FB page! Thanks for keeping up with us (and if you'd want to help with this daunting (for us!) task, give us a shout!) Lately we've been crazy busy on a couple of great projects, which we'll start to post progress on shortly. These projects include the digitization of 100,000 35mm aviation slides, dating from the 60s to the Reno Air Races of last year. Another project is the move of our headquarters office from a strip mall in Orange County, to historic Flabob Airport, nearby in Riverside County. We're also preparing to hang out with AAHS members and friends at the AAHS 2019 Annual Meeting ! Check out the event corner- we will be IMMERSED in cool aviation for the weekend of Feb. 15-17th--!

Day two at AirVenture 2018.  After a slow start due to weather, a/c have been flooding in today.  Here are a few that we...
07/24/2018

Day two at AirVenture 2018. After a slow start due to weather, a/c have been flooding in today. Here are a few that were seen today, 23-July-2018.

It's that time of year again - EAA AirVenture 2018.  Here is just a smidgen of the aircraft on display.  Included here i...
07/23/2018

It's that time of year again - EAA AirVenture 2018. Here is just a smidgen of the aircraft on display. Included here is the recently restored C-47 that led the D-Day Invasion, Honeywells Boeing 757 test bed, Boeing B-29 "Doc" a rare 1958 Pilatus P3-05 and a King's Engineering Fellowship Model 44 Angel, a Michigan ANG A-10 Thunderbolt II of the 107th FS - This group is celebrating its 100 anniversary with this specially painted bird (D-Day stripes and squadron logo)

CONGRATULATIONS TO  Carl Scholl, AAHS Board of Directors Member and co-owner of Aerotrader, for their restoration of Rod...
07/30/2017

CONGRATULATIONS TO Carl Scholl, AAHS Board of Directors Member and co-owner of Aerotrader, for their restoration of Rod Lewis' A-20 Havoc, of Lewis Air Legends, Texas. This restoration won EAA Airventures' GRAND CHAMPION award this year! More details to follow on this meticulous restoration, making this A-20 the only flying Havoc in the world.

Homebuilts to spacecraft, Airventure 2017 has had something for everyone, and then some. We continue to find friends and...
07/30/2017

Homebuilts to spacecraft, Airventure 2017 has had something for everyone, and then some. We continue to find friends and make new ones--

A storm system moves to the south of the Oshkosh airfield, much to the relief of numerous rare warbirds & vintage aircra...
07/27/2017

A storm system moves to the south of the Oshkosh airfield, much to the relief of numerous rare warbirds & vintage aircraft owners and admirers.

NC  17634, A Spartan Executive built by Spartan in the late 1930s, is a photographer's favorite in the early morning hou...
07/27/2017

NC 17634, A Spartan Executive built by Spartan in the late 1930s, is a photographer's favorite in the early morning hours at EAA Airventure 2017. Photo by AAHS member Rafe Thomsett

The day has been lovely and crisp, with more airplanes than you can shake an oil can at, and AAHS members stopping by th...
07/25/2017

The day has been lovely and crisp, with more airplanes than you can shake an oil can at, and AAHS members stopping by the Vintage Hangar:)

2017 EAA Airventure has begun! For the first time in recent memory AAHS will have a table at the Vintage Hangar, where w...
07/24/2017

2017 EAA Airventure has begun! For the first time in recent memory AAHS will have a table at the Vintage Hangar, where we'll sign up new members, visit with current members, and hang out with the aircraft type clubs such as the Globe Swift club, Navion club, and Wisconsin chapter of the 0X-5 club. We'll be supporting our AAHS friends, such as Carl Scholl, here at Oshkosh presenting the A-20 Havoc that his company Aerotrader, restored to combat readiness for owner Rod Lewis. Come by and visit, and we'll post pics as they happen.

Bob, taking a European holiday, has stopped into the Grand Hotel, in Bordeaux, France, and took his AAHS Journal,  Volum...
06/10/2017

Bob, taking a European holiday, has stopped into the Grand Hotel, in Bordeaux, France, and took his AAHS Journal, Volume 62, #1, with him. This Journal has its usual complement of great history, including the development of glider towing, in 1922; the development of the GLOMB (glide bomb) by the Naval Aircraft Factory, in 1940; a great article on how Pan American Airways successfully conquered the enormous challenges of the Pacific ocean air travel, and the origins of US Coast Guard aviation, to name a few.

Check out briefs of these articles and other aviation history at www.aahs-online.org!

American Aviation Historical Society's cover photo
05/20/2017

American Aviation Historical Society's cover photo

AAHS is supporting Flabob airport (RIR) and the DC3 Flyin this weekend!  You can't enjoy better flying history than 10 D...
05/20/2017

AAHS is supporting Flabob airport (RIR) and the DC3 Flyin this weekend! You can't enjoy better flying history than 10 DC3s taking off, landing, providing rides, stories and an amazing look at how air travel started in the US! 9 of the 10 aircraft flew in -with one of the nine already here for maintenance.

The furthest C47 came from Florida (Placid Lassie), another from Dallas, Texas, while DC3s/C47s came in from Arizona, and nearby from Riverside and Orange county airports.

From Sonoma came the first and only C-41A, the first military-contract-produced DC3, that also provided rides to lucky passengers.

Also on display at Flabob Airport are a few of their reproduction race planes, all built or worked on at Flabob Airport. AAHS provided full histories of each aircraft, and a CD of 900 photos of DC3s/C47s (also available for sale for $15)

Tomorrow we'll get great photos of the aircraft departing-
and wait for the next Flabob DC3 Fly-in!

Aviation experiences are best shared-like the friendship and history we shared at the Annual Meeting this weekend in San...
02/05/2017

Aviation experiences are best shared-like the friendship and history we shared at the Annual Meeting this weekend in San Diego! Gary Fogel gave us a tantalizing view of the early days of flying in San Diego, with his presentation on John J. Montgomery, while the wine, munchies and friends mixed freely at the Carlton Oaks Country Club. Today we goggled at the larger-than-life collection of aviation posters at the Allen Airways Museum, in addition to sights at the San Diego Air & Space Museum restoration annex, and hearing from SDASM head honcho Jim Kidrick! The guacamole was flowing, the aviation yarns were spreading like a kaftan - what a great time to be in aviation!

Make sure to attend the AAHS Annual Meeting, open to members and guests, at the beautiful Allen Airways Museum, this Feb...
01/30/2017

Make sure to attend the AAHS Annual Meeting, open to members and guests, at the beautiful Allen Airways Museum, this February 3, 4, 5th!

We're ABOUT ready for our 2017 Annual Meeting!   Come out and share unique aviation history with us at Gillespie Field, ...
01/30/2017

We're ABOUT ready for our 2017 Annual Meeting! Come out and share unique aviation history with us at Gillespie Field, Feb 3, 4, 5th! All are welcome! Our one rate gets you the WHOLE weekend of activity!

Ok-- HUGE apology needed here! Our FB volunteer has had medical issues, and we've not had updates to our FB page in far ...
01/03/2017

Ok-- HUGE apology needed here! Our FB volunteer has had medical issues, and we've not had updates to our FB page in far too long! We've got some great new help with our FB page, and look forward to getting some great news and aviation history- rare photos, and amazing new histories uncovered every day! Thanks for hanging in there- and join us at our upcoming Annual Meeting, at the beautiful Allen Airways Museum, Gillespie Field, San Diego! The weekend of FEBRUARY 3-5th will include tours of the San Diego Air and Space Museum restoration center, lunch at Allen Airways (Feb 4th) and a tour of the Air and Space Museum, in Balboa Park, on the 5th! Do check it out, and come join us!

Porterfields cross Continental Divide..The return flight has been along I-80, through Nebraska, Wyoming, and now into Ut...
09/07/2016

Porterfields cross Continental Divide..
The return flight has been along I-80, through Nebraska, Wyoming, and now into Utah. Two days ago we'd left Iowa to skirt a massive set of thunderstorms in Nebraska. Then the Porterfields were tossed about getting through the backside of the front. But those tough little birds (and sturdy nerves of the pilots!) saw the planes through Gothenburg, NE, Laramie, Rawlins, RockSprings, and Evanston, Wyoming. Great news as well, the EAA photoshoot at the AAA fly-in turned out some wonderful shots!

Porterfield Flight Westward BoundWe've left the Antique Aircraft Association Fly-in to visit a special airfield, 100 mil...
09/05/2016

Porterfield Flight Westward Bound
We've left the Antique Aircraft Association Fly-in to visit a special airfield, 100 miles south in Missouri. We flew in to Rankin Airport, owned by Joe Rankin, the Type Certificate Holder of the Porterfield. He let us view his modified Porterfield (now the 'Rankin Collegiate') N1049S, which sports an 85 HP Continental, a new observation window, and other mods we didnt have time to examine. Following a visit with Joe, we headed to Greenfield Airfield, back in Iowa, to see the Iowa State Aviation Museum, which features two family members of Bob Cable. The museum credits much of their material research comes from the books 'Iowa Takes to the Air' (3 volumes) written by AAHS member Ann Pellegreno.

We enjoy two days of flying and storytelling at the Antique Aircraft Association flyin-Blakesburg
09/03/2016

We enjoy two days of flying and storytelling at the Antique Aircraft Association flyin-Blakesburg

We enjoy two days of flying and storytelling at the Antique Aircraft Association flyin-Blakesburg

09/01/2016

Day 4, 5 of AAHS Flight to Ottumwa. The terrain between Las Vegas, NM and central Iowa has changed drastically, from sage and pinion pine, to rolling grasslands, to neatly arranged farmlands, separated by winding creeks and forest strips. Great people have helped out at fuel stops, and stopped to chat with us at restaurants and FBOs.

Day 4, 5 of Porterfields to Ottumwa
09/01/2016

Day 4, 5 of Porterfields to Ottumwa

Day 3 of Porterfields to Ottumwa
08/30/2016

Day 3 of Porterfields to Ottumwa

08/29/2016

The flight today with the three Porterfields, from Winslow AZ to Las Vegas, NM was under beautiful skies. Our chase motorhomes provided the snacks and easy chairs (ok, glass of wine too!) at the end of the day. We head out at dawn for Dodge City, Kansas, where a steak dinner awaits tomorrow (see today's photos in below post)

We ve made it to Las Vegas New Mexico!
08/29/2016

We ve made it to Las Vegas New Mexico!

We ve made it to Las Vegas New Mexico!

07/25/2016

This Day in History: July 25, 1977

The Aero Design DG-1, a custom-built single-seat Unlimited Class racing monoplane makes its first flight. Powered by two RX-3 rotary engine in a pusher/tractor configuration it was targeted at breaking the world speed record for propeller-driven aircraft.

This Day in History: July 20, 1969USAF Col "Buzz" Aldrin joins Neil Armstrong on the surface of the moon while USAF Lt C...
07/20/2016

This Day in History: July 20, 1969

USAF Col "Buzz" Aldrin joins Neil Armstrong on the surface of the moon while USAF Lt Col Mike Collins remains in orbit

The AAHS recently published its first book in a number of years: "America's Local Service Airlines", by David StringerTh...
07/09/2016

The AAHS recently published its first book in a number of years:
"America's Local Service Airlines", by David Stringer

The “Local Service Airlines,” as they eventually became known, were given birth by the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB). In 1943, the CAB undertook a mission to investigate the possibility of extending scheduled air service to smaller cities and towns throughout the United States even if the service to some of those communities might not be economically viable. This was an incredibly progressive undertaking for a government agency. America was in the midst of World War Two. The nation was becoming “air-minded” and the members of the Board knew that, once the war was over, every city and town would want to be on the airline map with this new industry carrying the weight of importance that the railroads had shouldered in the 19th century. Providing transportation to isolated towns and implementing air service to communities near military installations in support of national defense were additional reasons for examining the potential of this new type of air carrier. This is the story of the 13 airlines that were selected to participate in this experiment. ( ISBN 978-0-9801092-1-4, Released June 1, 2016 )

You can get your copy at an introductory sale price of $33.95 by going to http://www.aahs-online.org/store.php

Address

15211 Springdale St
Huntington Beach, CA
92649-1156

General information

Office is open every Wednesday from 10:00am to 6:00pm.

Opening Hours

Wednesday 20:45 - 17:00

Telephone

(714) 549-4818

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WORLDWIDE RELEASE TODAY! My critically acclaimed book about my lifelong search to solve the mysterious 1957 Pan Am plane crash that killed my father and 43 others is now available in bookstores, online and in e-versions. Please consider sharing this on your page, and thanks to all of my friends for your encouragement and support! Click here for more info or to order a book:
I have published a new book about the four-engined Fokker aircraft. It describes the Fokker F-32 in service in the USA, and the Fokker F.###VI and F.XXII in Europa. Also all four-engined projects have been described. The book has 384 pages and 569 photographs and ten colour profiles. The chapter about the Fokker F-32 in the USA has by Gert Blüm (specialist on Fokker Aircraft Corp. of America) been described as the best and most detailed description on the F-32 ever. In the book the chapter about the F-32 has 85 pages and more than 100 photographs. Also three colour profiles and posters have been added to the book. A book worth while buying: https://www.europeanairlines.no/product/the-fokker-fours/ Here are some pages from the book (opens as PDF):https://www.europeanairlines.no/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/The-Fokker-Fours-extract-1-19.pdf
"Cadillac of the sky" in miniature. My 1:5 scale P-51D is on permanent display at the RAF Museum at Cosford, UK, where it is dedicated to all US aircrew who gave up their lives alongside their British allies during two world wars. The model took around ten years to build with the aid of the original NAA production drawings. For those interested there is more on my website www.spitfireinmyworkshop.net
Any room for a little 'un? My 1:5 scale P-51D – over ten years in the making – is on permanent display at the RAF Museum in the UK. The model is dedicated to all US aircrew who gave their lives alongside their allies during two world wars. More on my blog www.spitfireinmyworkshop.net
Any updates on upcoming events?