Aviation History

Museum Hosts Historic Bell 47 Helicopter and St. Louis Area Photo Flight

The Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum hosted Michael Sequeira’s historic Bell 47G on display February 20.  The aircraft was originally a Bell 47B, serial number 5, later converted to the 47G standard.  Several rides around the St. Louis riverfront were raffled and a photo session past the Gateway Arch was also flown.  (Photos: Carmelo Turdo and Fred Harl, The Aero Experience).























Custom Model of the St. Louis Robin Donated to Museum

A custom-built 1/72 scale model of the St. Louis Robin was recently donated to the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum by Curator Emeritus Jack Abercrombie.  The model, 99% or more “scratch built” from sheet polystyrene and rods, represents the aircraft that was made at the St. Louis Curtiss-Robertson Aircraft Company in 1928 and set an endurance record (using early aerial refueling techniques) in July of 1929 of over 17 days in the air.  The model is so detailed as to include a patch on the top of the fuselage representing the one made to the aircraft during the record flight.  “My reason for the work–to correct some misconceptions in both period and present-day publications about the remarkable airplane and feat,” Abercrombie said.  “The real 1929 event represented St. Louis aviation at its finest.”
The model will be on display in a special exhibit in the museum at a future date.

McDonnell Model 220 – A Current View

Recently, Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum President, Mark Nankivil, visited El Paso, TX where the only McDonnell Model 220 executive jet is located.  The jet, a development of the Model 119 that lost the military aircraft contract competition to the Lockheed Jetstar, has been sitting on the ramp at El Paso International Airport awaiting its fate.  The museum has an interest in the aircraft’s future, and has expressed as much to the aircraft owner and airport staff in recent years.  The path ahead for the jet remains uncertain.

Below are some photos from the recent visit, a Boeing photo of the aircraft in McDonnell Aircraft prototype colors, and a McDonnell Aircraft video of the aircraft’s executive transport mission.  More details about the aircraft will be forthcoming as available.

The McDonnell Aircraft promotional video can be found at: https://youtu.be/yKcGDJQwTz0.