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Learn about African American History at National Museum USAF

  • Published
  • By Danielle Almeter
  • National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

As Black History Month approaches, visitors to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force can view exhibits and check out online resources to learn more about African Americans who served in the Air Force and its predecessor organizations.


The museum opened an expanded Tuskegee Airmen exhibit in its World War II Gallery in 2015. The exhibit features a Stearman PT-13D training aircraft, in addition to photos and documents, as well as artifacts such as Col. Edward Gleed’s flight jacket, Maj. Charles Hall’s Distinguished Flying Cross, and objects from Lt. Col. Charles DeBow, one of the first five pilots to graduate from Tuskegee.


This year marks the ten year anniversary of the Tuskegee Airmen receiving the Congressional Gold Medal for their bravery during World War II. A copy of the original medal, which is at the Smithsonian, is on display in the museum’s Tuskegee Airmen exhibit.


For those looking to introduce younger children to these WWII heroes, the museum’s Education staff created a lesson plan on the Tuskegee Airmen for students in grades 2-4.


You can also listen to a self-guided audio tour that guides visitors through the Early Years and World War II Galleries, pointing out prominent black aviators and significant milestones in Air Force history. In addition to featuring the Tuskegee Airmen, audio files highlight Eugene Jacques Bullard, the first black military pilot; Engineer Aviation Battalions in WWII; the integration of the Air Force; and other African American aviation pioneers.


Links to all of these features, along with more videos, lectures, educational resources and exhibit text related to African Americans in the U.S. Air Force and its predecessor organizations are available at


The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 360 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about one million visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit


NOTE TO PUBLIC: For more information, please contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-3286.

NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information, please contact Danielle Almeter at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Public Affairs Division at (937) 255-1283.