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  • The Memphis Belle: American Icon

    The Memphis Belle and its crew became timeless symbols of the service and sacrifice of the heavy bomber crews and support personnel who helped defeat Nazi Germany.  This famed aircraft was the first US Army Air Forces heavy bomber to return to the United States after completing 25 missions over Europe. The Memphis Belle was a B-17F heavy bomber
  • Memphis Belle Crew

    The young men assigned to the Memphis Belle represented a typical Eighth Air Force heavy bomber crew.  They ranged in age from 19 to 26 and came from states across the US, including Washington, Indiana, Texas, and Connecticut.  Like their Eighth Air Force counterparts—and contrary to a popular myth—they flew most, but not all, of their missions
  • The "Memphis Belle" and Nose Art

    The “Memphis Belle”The Memphis Belle was named to honor Morgan’s fiancée Margaret Polk, of Memphis, Tennessee, whom he met before leaving for England.  Their love story was well-publicized, but their engagement ended during the war bond tour.Morgan flew on combat missions with a picture of Margaret Polk in the cockpit. Memphis Belle ArtworkThe
  • Eddie V. Rickenbacker WWI Diary

    Note: This item is currently in storageIn commemoration of the Centennial of World War I, the National Museum of the United States Air Force will regularly post excerpts from Capt Edward V. Rickenbacker's 1918 wartime diary.  These begin with Saturday, March 2, 1918, the date Rickenbacker began capturing his experiences in France.Click here to
  • 94th Aero Squadron

    Note: This photo is currently in storage Having completed gunnery school, Rickenbacker was assigned to the 94th Aero Squadron. In late February, he and severalother pilots traveled to Paris to fly their new Nieuport 28s back to Villeneuve. However, a snow storm delayed their return,and Rickenbacker used some of the extra time to begin a diary. His
  • Lt. Edward Rickenbacker

    Note: This item is currently in storageEddie Rickenbacker completed his pilot's training in just 17 days.  In addition to earning his pilot's wings, Rickenbacker also was commissioned as an officer. On December 10, 1917, Lt Rickenbacker and fourteen other pilots - including Capt. Fiorella LaGuardia, Lt. Douglas Campbell, and Lt. Quentin Roosevelt,
  • Edward V. Rickenbacker- AEF Chauffeur

    Note: This item is currently in storage Although he was recruited to serve as General Pershing’s chauffeur, Rickenbacker primarily drove for Major Townsend F. Dodd, a subordinate to Lt Col William B. Mitchell.  As Mitchell and Dodd toured various regions in France, the effect of airpower began to emerge, and made a lasting impression on the three
  • Eddie Rickenbacker-Race Car Driver

    On October 8, 1890, Edward Rickenbacker was born in a small house on South Pearl Street in Columbus, Ohio.  The second son of Swiss immigrants, Eddie’s family fell on particularly hard times following the death of his father when Eddie was just 13 years old.  Eddie left school during the 7th grade, and worked at various jobs throughout Columbus
  • Captain E.V. Rickenbacker Swagger Stick

    Note: This item is currently in storage.This wooden swagger stick was made in France for Captain E.V. Rickenbacker during his service in World War I.  Spiraling up the surface of the stick is a carved wooden snake marked down the back with 26 black German Crosses-representing Rickenbacker's 26 aerial victories over his German opponents.Click here
  • Eddie Rickenbacker Ring, Ace of Aces

    Note: This item is currently in storage. This ring reads “A OF A.”  Captain E.V. Rickenbacker was called America’s Ace of Aces, due to his accruing the highest number of American aerial victories against the Germans during World War I— 26.   This ring is also engraved with the following designs:  Both sides have the Hat-in-the-Ring emblem of the
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