History Comes Alive at the Museum

A few months back, the team at YURVIEW (Cox Communications) visited the Museum to do a profile. Enjoy! ...
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Curious Curator Blog 009

A Return to Glory

A Return to Glory : The Story of the Recovery & Restoration of the Sandbar Mitchell Tucked away in the east end of Hangar A is our B-25N “Mitchell.” Manufactured by North American Aviation in Kansas City, KS and delivered to the USAAF on January 17, 1945, the Museum’s “Mitchell” was dropped from inventory and delivered to the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum on November 9, 1959. Never to fly again.But, what if? What if we could fire up both Wright engines and take it up? Turns out, we will do just that…sort of.It’s the lifelong dream of Warbirds of Glory Museum Director, Patrick Mihalek. To restore and fly a B-25. For Mihalek, the love for the B-25 Mitchell all started when he was 9 years old drawing pictures of them for his grandfather. And as he drew those pictures, a dream was born to start an aviation museum and ...
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Race for the Bomb: Part 3

The Race for the Bomb: Part 3 Blog Post #008 Do we really have Adolf Hitler to thank for the U.S. building the first Atomic Bomb, in a way yes. And one more time Adolf Germany invades the Soviet Union 1941 In June 1941, Hitler decided to break his non-aggression pact with Stalin and invaded the Soviet Union. This two year prolonged invasion that ultimately spelled defeat for the Third Reich pulled more and more resources from the Soviets burgeoning atomic weapon development to fight the Germans. Most of the scientist working on the project were pulled into the Red Army and brought the promising program to a virtual halt. Thank you Hitler for stalling another atomic program and ensuring the United States’ success. Based on earlier atomic research begun in Delaware back in the early 1930s and then progressed through Columbia University and later moved to the University of ...
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Blog 007

Race for the Bomb: Part 2

The Race For the Bomb: Part 2 Blog Post #007 Do we really have Adolf Hitler to thank for the U.S. building the first Atomic Bomb, in a way yes. Inviting Einstein As Leo Szilard observed the development, study and possible implementation of atomic fission in a Nazi Germany, they felt the strong urgency to tip the balance more to the Allies. Szilard had immigrated to the United States, fleeing the rise of war in Europe. Once he arrived, he reached out to a fellow physicist, a very well known physicist, Albert Einstein to help get a letter to then U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt warning of the possibility of German developing an atomic weapon based on atomic fission. Einstein agreed and signed the letter which called for an aggressive dedication of resources in atomic research and development. The British Bomb The United Kingdom was also working in the field ...
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Blog 006

Race for the Bomb: Part 1

The Race For the Bomb: Part 1 Blog Post #006 Do we really have Adolf Hitler to thank for the U.S. building the first Atomic Bomb, in a way yes. Where the Atom Began Ok, we are not really going the beginning of atoms but rather early atomic research. Dating back to 1908, New Zealand born, British scientist Earnest Rutherford received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in radioactive substances. His more important accomplishments occurred after he moved to Victoria University of Manchester, England where he theorized that atoms have their charge concentrated in the very small nucleus. Through his theories and experimentation he discovered the emission of subatomic particles that would become known as protons. In 1920 his leadership led to the discovery of the neutron and the controlled splitting of a nucleus, 1932. The scientific world of atomic physics was rather small and closely knit. Hungarian ...
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Private Ed Mauser photo

Ed Mauser

Ed Mauser: Curahee –––––– BLOG POST #005 Ed Mauser: Curahee Born in LaSalle, Illinois, in 1916, Ed Mauser was 23 years old when he was drafted into the U.S. Army on January 17, 1942. While at Fort Benning, Georgia, Mauser was waiting to be assigned to a unit when he saw, for the first time, men jumping out of planes. The paratrooper was a new concept for the Army and it was so dangerous that only volunteers could be accepted and they were paid an extra $50 a month. Ed Mauser jumped at the chance to join and one week later he had become a paratrooper and joined the airborne. After earning his jump wings, he was transferred to Fort Bragg, North Carolina where and was assigned to E Company, of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, of the the 101st Airborne’s. Also known as Easy Company. Private 1st Class Ed ...
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Dick Joyce

Lieutenant Colonel Richard O. Joyce, USAF (RET.) –––––– BLOG POST #004 Lieutenant Colonel Richard O. Joyce, USAF (RET.) Richard Joyce was a native of Lincoln, Nebraska, having graduated from Lincoln High School and later the University of Nebraska in 1940. He joined the Army Air Corps after graduation and received his wings in 1941. His unit, the 89th Reconnaissance Squadron, was commanded by Lt. Colonel James Doolittle and was among the first to train in the Army’s new North American B-25 “Mitchell” medium bomber. Following the1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the country was left with a burning desire for some immediate action, but no apparent means to carry it out. The Japanese Islands lay beyond the range of any land based bomber and carrier aircraft were incapable of carrying bomb loads capable of doing sufficient damage. A plan developed to load medium bombers on a Navy carrier and transport ...
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Lee Seemann

Lee Seemann Nebraskan Pilot –––––– BLOG POST #003 Perilous Journey: Capt. Lee Seemann and the B-17 Born in Omaha, NE, 1920, Lee Seemann did not show much interest in aviation other than going on a few rides with a family friend from Wahoo who owned his own plane. While he attended Central High School (Omaha, NE), Seemann excelled academically and in sports, but one of his proudest high school memories was being a part of the JROTC Crack Squad. Between his Junior and Senior Year, he and the other cadets won the national competition 1937. College days in California Following high school, Seemann attended Santa Clara College and continued his athletic and ROTC endeavors. Following graduation in 1942 he was inducted into the U. S. Army as a 2nd LT. Seemann reported to the 1,300-acre Santa Ana Army Air Field in August. Though his drill training at Central High School ...
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Project FICON and the B-36

Project FICON and the B-36 –––––– BLOG POST #002 Project FICON In the beginning of the Cold War strategic bombing and strategic reconnaissance faced the issue of distance to target. The United States long range bombers and reconnaissance aircraft could make the flight but would not have fighter escort. The concept of FICON (fighter conveyor) seemed to be the immediate solution. Parasite Fighter Developed out of a request by the USAAF as an escort fighter to be carried in the bomb bay of a Northrop XB-35 or Convair B-36, the McDonnell XF-85 Goblin first flew August 25, 1948. The extended range of the large bombers and growing concerns of the Cold War called for nuclear bombers to be able to be launched from the United States, reach the Soviet Union and escape to a friendly base. Stationing escort fighters in Western Europe put bombing missions at risk. The Goblin was ...
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Quest: Navigating the World

Navigation Adventure, Exploration, Innovation

Navigation, Adventure, Exploration, Innovation –––––– BLOG POST #001 Navigation, Adventure, Exploration, Innovation We all take navigation for granted; we do it every day and do not think about it. These days during social distancing and lock downs we navigate from the kitchen to the living room. We navigate to the market, or to the pharmacy. We generally use our own experience or of those around us.  For journeys to parts unknown and much farther than our social connections, we must use other means, say GPS. In today’s technology, navigation is at our fingertips. But before our modern Global Positioning, how did early explorers navigate the unknown? The first known map was uncovered in Pavlov, Czech Republic and dates back to about 25,000 BC. The carved Mammoth tusk depicts mountains, rivers and routes, recording possible good hunting grounds, fresh water or another tribe. Maps are our way of recording where places ...
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