The H-5, originally designated the R-5 ("H" for "Helicopter;" "R" for "Rotorcraft"), was designed to provide a helicopter with a greater useful load, endurance, speed and service ceiling than the earlier R-4. The first of four XR-5s made its initial flight in August 1943. In March 1944 the U.S. Army Air Forces ordered 26 YR-5As for service testing, and in February 1945 the first YR-5A was delivered.
During its service life, the H-5 flew rescue and mercy missions throughout the world. It gained its greatest fame during the Korean War when it was called upon repeatedly to rescue United Nations pilots shot down behind enemy lines and to evacuate wounded personnel from frontline areas.
More than 300 H-5s had been built by the time production ended in 1951. The YH-5A on display was obtained from Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., in March 1955.
TECHNICAL NOTES: Engine:Pratt & Whitney R-985 of 450 hp Maximum speed: 90 mph Range: 280 miles Main rotor diameter: 48 ft. Tail rotor diameter: 8 ft. 5 in. Fuselage length: 41 ft. 2 in. Height: 12 ft. 11 in. Weight: 4,815 lbs. loaded Serial number: 43-46620