Yankee Air Museum

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Yankee Air Museum
YankeeAirMuseumLogo.png
Yankee Air Museum is located in Michigan
Yankee Air Museum
Location within Michigan
Established 1981 (1981)
Location Willow Run Airport, Van Buren Township, Michigan, United States
Coordinates 42°14′21″N 83°30′29″W / 42.23903°N 83.50808°W / 42.23903; -83.50808
Type Aviation museum
Director Kevin Walsh[1]
Curator Julie Osborne[1]
Website www.yankeeairmuseum.org

The Yankee Air Museum is an aviation museum located at Willow Run Airport in Van Buren Township, Michigan. The museum has a small fleet of flying aircraft and a collection of static display aircraft outdoors.

History[edit]

Yankee Air Force Education Center

The Yankee Air Force Inc. was founded in 1981 to pursue these goals:[2]

  • To preserve a part of Michigan's extensive aviation history.
  • To acquire one of the original USAAF hangars and restore it to its original condition.
  • To obtain a B-24 Liberator built at the Ford Willow Run plant, site of the museum.

2004 fire[edit]

Yankee Air Force Museum, Side Entrance

On the night of October 9, 2004, the Yankee Air Museum's hangar on the northeast side of Willow Run Airport (KYIP) burned down.[3] The B-17, B-25 and C-47 were saved through heroic efforts by museum volunteers. The Stinson[clarification needed] was at another hangar. Everything else inside the hangar was destroyed, including the original prototype North American YOV-10A Bronco, Waco CG-4A Glider, a former Thunderbirds Republic F-105, Aero L-39, Link Trainer, artifacts, spare parts, tools, and the Museum's library.

Rebuilding plans were underway within days[4] and in 2008, the museum transitioned from being a membership club to a director-driven organization with an 11-member board. The objective of the museum's fundraising arm, the Michigan Aerospace Foundation, was to build a greatly expanded, state-of-the-art aviation museum and aerospace facility to replace the lost facility.[5][6] Ground was broken for a new museum building in April 2007.[7]

In 2009, the museum purchased a building from the Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology (MIAT), on D Street to the east of the airfield,[7] intending it as the new home of the museum collection.

In summer 2010, the museum opened the David and Andrea Robertson Education Center in a 1938 schoolhouse that had been moved from another part of the Willow Run complex.[5] This had been the officers' club for the USAAF detachments stationed at Willow Run during the war,[7] and was apparently the schoolhouse for the boys living at Henry Ford's Willow Run Farm (a social experiment that used the Willow Run site in 1939 and 1940 before the airfield and industrial complex were ever conceived).

The museum reopened to the public on October 10, 2010, six years to the day after the fire.[8][dead link][9] This allowed the museum to vacate Hangar Two, which was condemned by the Wayne County Airport Authority.[5]

The museum became a Smithsonian Affiliate in July 2011.[10]

Move to Willow Run bomber plant[edit]

In April 2013, Yankee Air Museum and RACER Trust, owner of the former General Motors Willow Run plant, announced a plan for Yankee Air Museum to acquire a 175,000-square-foot (16,300 m2) portion of the factory, contingent upon the museum raising the funds necessary to preserve and secure their proposed portion of the facility. The museum would consolidate operations scattered on various parcels at Willow Run Airport into the 1941 landmark, designed by Albert Kahn, with the trust seeking to clear the remainder of the plant for redevelopment. The plant was used during World War II to manufacture B-24 bombers.[11]

The campaign to save a portion of Willow Run for the Yankee Air Museum is called SaveTheBomberPlant.org, and is centered on a fundraising website by the same name. The campaign has attracted national and international attention from media outlets that include National Public Radio, The History Channel magazine, National Geographic TV, The Guardian (UK), and the (UK) Daily Mail.[12]

After extending the fundraising deadline to Oct. 1, and then to Nov. 1, 2013, on October 26, 2013, RACER Trust and the Yankee Air Museum again reached a new, and final, deadline extension agreement. The final deadline to raise the funds necessary to preserve a portion of the Willow Run plant for the Yankee Air Museum was May 1, 2014.[13]

At the time of the May 1, 2014 deadline, the Yankee Air Museum had raised over $7 million of its original $8 million fundraising goal, which was enough to enable the trust to move forward and sign a purchase agreement with Yankee, with the actual purchase expected to be finalized in late summer or fall of 2014.[14] The majority of the $8 million fundraising goal reflects separation costs to make the preserved portion of the plant viable as a standalone structure.

The remaining portion of the Willow Run complex, which includes over 95% of the historic building, has been sold to Walbridge, Inc., for redevelopment as a connected vehicle research and test facility. RACER Trust will demolish this portion of the building prior to turning the property over to Walbridge.[15][dead link] Preparations for demolition of Willow Run Assembly facility, with the exception of the portion that the Yankee Air Museum is campaigning to save, were well underway as of August 2014, with much of the building already demolished.[citation needed]

In October 2014 the museum announced that it is changing its name to the National Museum of Aviation and Technology at Historic Willow Run.[16]

Collection[edit]

The Yankee Air Museum's Collections & Exhibits building covers 47,000 square feet (4,400 m2) of floor space and houses permanent and rotating aviation and historical displays, restoration projects, a retail store and a movie theatre that is available to the public. It is also home to Yankee Air Museum staff and volunteers and has meeting rooms and banquet facilities for rent, machine shops and storage space for the museum collection. An outside area next to the museum is the new home of the air park.[7]

Yankee Warrior, one of only two B-25C/D Mitchell aircraft still flying today.

From 2007 until August 2011, the Yankee Air Museum's flyable aircraft were hangared at the Township Airport at Grosse Ile, Michigan.[17][better source needed]

Airworthy[edit]

Aircraft on display[edit]

Gliders[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Contact Us". Yankee Air Museum. Yankee Air Museum. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  2. ^ O'Leary, Michael, Thunder over Michigan, Air Classics, Nov 2003
  3. ^ Mary Grady (October 10, 2004). "Michigan's Yankee Air Museum Destroyed In Fire". AVWeb.com. Retrieved 2011-05-12. 
  4. ^ "History of YAM". Michigan Aerospace Foundation. Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c Welch, Sherri (8 September 2010). "Yankee ingenuity: Air museum to reopen at Willow Run Oct. 9–10". Crain's Detroit Business. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  6. ^ "Project Announced To Rebuild Yankee Air Museum". ClickOnDetroit. Internet Broadcasting Systems, Inc. 22 April 2005. Archived from the original on 22 April 2005. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  7. ^ a b c d "Yankee Air Museum – Our Story". Yankee Air Museum. Archived from the original on 2010-08-17. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  8. ^ Yankee Air Museum rebuilt – Officials, volunteers resurrect historic site ravaged in 2004 fire, by Steve Pardo, The Detroit News
  9. ^ Perkins, Tom (11 October 2010). "Spirits soar as Yankee Air Museum celebrates grand reopening six years after devastating fire". The Ann Arbor News. MLive Media Group. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  10. ^ "Hangar Happenings" (PDF). Yankee Air Museum. October 2011. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  11. ^ Bomey, Nathan (23 April 2013). "Former GM Willow Run plant may be demolished". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 23 April 2013. 
  12. ^ "Save The Bomber Plant Website". SaveTheBomberPlant.org. Retrieved 27 September 2013. 
  13. ^ Baldas, Tresa (26 October 2013). "Gifts of time and money for Ypsilanti Township's Willow Run bomber plant". Detroit Free Press. www.freep.com. Archived from the original on 27 October 2013. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  14. ^ Freed, Ben (23 June 2014). "Yankee Air Museum signs deal for part of Willow Run Bomber Plant". MLive. MLive Media Group. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  15. ^ "YPSILANTI TOWNSHIP: RACER Trust reaches demolition, development agreements for Willow Run plant". The Ypsilanti Courier. Retrieved 7 September 2013. 
  16. ^ Bomey, Nathan; Creager, Ellen (31 October 2014). "Yankee Air Museum changing name, mission in expansion". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  17. ^ "Yankee Air Museum Visits Grosse Ile". Youtube.com. 2009-12-05. Retrieved 2013-12-27. 
  18. ^ "B17 Flying Fortress". Yankee Air Museum. Archived from the original on 9 September 2013. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  19. ^ "FAA REGISTRY [N3193G]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  20. ^ "B-25D Mitchell". Yankee Air Museum. Archived from the original on 9 September 2013. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  21. ^ "B-25D-35-NC SN 43-3634 "Yankee Warrior"". B-25 History Project. B-25 History Project. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  22. ^ "FAA REGISTRY [N3774]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  23. ^ "C-47 Skytrain". Yankee Air Museum. Archived from the original on 9 September 2013. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  24. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Douglas TC-47D, s/n 44-76716 USAF, c/n 16300, c/r N8704". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  25. ^ "FAA REGISTRY [N8704]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  26. ^ "Yankee Air Museum features biplane". HometownLife. 3 April 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  27. ^ "FAA REGISTRY [N513RS]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  28. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t "Exhibits". Yankee Air Museum. Yankee Air Museum. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  29. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Boeing B-52D Stratofortress, s/n 55-0677 USAF". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  30. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Stinson Reliant I, s/n FB724 RAF, c/n 77-0452, c/r N15JH". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  31. ^ "FAA REGISTRY [N43YF]". Federal Aviation Administration. U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  32. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Bell UH-1D-BF Iroquois, s/n 66-16006 US, c/n 5700". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  33. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Antonov-PZL Mielec An-2R, c/n 1G 211-41, c/r N75AN". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  34. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Cessna 336 / 337/O-2 Skymaster, s/n 67-21416 USAF, c/n 337M-0122, c/r N60BB". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  35. ^ "Airframe Dossier - de Havilland Canada-deHavilland Canada DHC-4 Caribou, c/n 002, c/r N6080". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  36. ^ "Airframe Dossier - North American F-86L-60-NA Sabre, s/n 53-1060 USAF, c/n 201-504". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  37. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Republic F-84F Thunderstreak, s/n 51-9501 USAF, c/r N5006". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  38. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Republic RF-84F Thundersflash, s/n 52-7421 USAF". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  39. ^ "Hangar Happenings" (PDF). Yankee Air Museum. March 2017. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  40. ^ "Airframe Dossier - North American F-100C Super Sabre, s/n 54-1785 USAF, c/n 217-46". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  41. ^ "Airframe Dossier - McDonnell NF-101B Voodoo, s/n 56-0235 USAF". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  42. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Lockheed T-33A-5-LO Shooting Star, s/n 58-0492 USAF, c/n 580-1541, c/r N24837". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  43. ^ "Airframe Dossier - English Electric-Martin RB-57A, s/n 52-1426 USAF". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  44. ^ "Airframe Dossier - McDonnell F-4C Phantom II, s/n 63-7555 USAF". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  45. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Lockheed EC-121K Warning Star, s/n 141311 USN, c/n 4435". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  46. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Consolidated PB4Y-2 Privateer, s/n 59876 USN, c/r N6813D". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  47. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Schweizer TG-3A, s/n 42-52948 USAAF, c/r N4808N". Aerial Visuals. AerialVisuals.ca. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 

External links[edit]