The XB-19 buzzing the field

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Lesson of the day: Do not always trust the caption on a photo. This one states the photo was taken at Long Beach, California, in 1941. A sharp-eyed reader noted something in the photo that puts that caption in doubt: There appears what seems to be piles of melting snow. For those not familiar with the climate of Southern California, there is about as much a chance of it snowing in Long Beach as there is in Miami Beach. Further reflection makes me guess this photo was not taken in 1941, but rather 1942. The aircraft is painted, and still has radial engines (It was re-engined with Allisons in 1943).

But, where then was the photo taken? I took a guess, looked at some old photos for verification, and can confirm the aircraft is approaching the west side of Wright Field, Ohio. (And hey: It snows there often.)

4 thoughts on “The XB-19 buzzing the field

  1. Wow, your collection of photos is amazing.

    Who are you and how did you come by your treasure trove? Maybe I missed something on your website but I couldn’t find any background info.

    I was surprised to see that you had a photo of the one-and-only Douglas YOA-5 afloat. Pictures of that plane are rare. I recently stumbled across another photo of it (mislabelled as its sister design, the XP3D-1) in the digitized Rudy Arnold Photo Collection that can be viewed in the Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives. That collection has some great high resolution photos.

    I don’t suppose you have any photos of another obscurity – the Vance Flying Wing of 1932-34. It is one of my many aviation history obsessions.

    Many thanks for sharing

    Regards,
    Eric

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    1. Eric,
      Thank you for the good words! I do try to post what others might hopefully find interesting.
      I have collected aviation photos for decades, and in those years I have been fortunate to acquire images that can be considered scarce. The photos here are, 99% of the time, an original physical photo – not from the internet. Some of my photos are certainly not unique to my collection, but they are original period photographs and not something I borrowed from the internet.

      I have filed cabinets packed with goodies that I look forward to sharing with my fellow enthusiasts, and I am glad to welcome you as one.
      ~Will
      PS. I will search my archives for the Vance Flying Wing.

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  2. I don’t wish to be a nitpicker about photo captions, but to me anyway, there is nothing in the photo that says “Long Beach”. For instance in the right foreground there appears to be snow on the ground, and not an oil drilling rig in sight, and when that photo was taken, they were ubiquitous in the Long Beach area. (I was there 1943-45).

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    1. Good point; that be snow – hardly what one finds in Long Beach. I had not closely examined the picture – I just went with what is stated on the photo’s original caption. I did have a hunch which paid off: That is Wright Field, Ohio.
      Thanks for the heads up!

      Will

      Like

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