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Author Topic:   Carolinas Aviation Museum artifacts
dogcrew5369
Member

Posts: 547
From: Statesville, NC
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 02-25-2010 10:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for dogcrew5369   Click Here to Email dogcrew5369     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have been a member of the Carolinas Aviation Museum at the Charlotte, NC airport since 1996 and thought I'd post some photos here of what our museum offers. Our museum has one of only two surviving NACA D-558-1 Skystreaks in exsistence (#37972). #37970 is currently at the National Museum of Naval Aviation since the 1960's and #37971 crashed during the operational flight period. The first photo is of our Skystreak after it was brought in after recovery at Cherry Point Marine Corp Air Station. I saw it there ingloriusly crated up sitting outside in the weather in 1999. This photo I took in August 2000. This is the only one that Scott Crossfield flew in.

This is a photo I took of how the D-558-1 Skystreak currently looks. It flew from 1948 to 1953 and its pilots were Crossfield, May, Champine, Griffith, Jones, Walker, Butchart and McKay. The unveiling was in June 2001 with Scott Crossfield and Robert Champine in attendance. A lot of history in this rare plane.

This letter I received from Scott Crossfield before restoration began on our Skystreak after I had sent him some photos. As noted in his letter, he thought this Skystreak was 37970, but it turned out to be his Skystreak 37972.

Also at our museum is a full-scale mockup of the Mercury capsule with complete escape tower. It was rescued from the now defunct Florence Air & Space Museum of SC. We do know it dates back to the Mercury program, but wasn't sure what capacity it was used in. It is now restored completely.


Our museum has dozens of other flying and non-flying airplanes and artifacts including a space shuttle tire and a restored Regulus missile.

ea757grrl
Member

Posts: 555
From: South Carolina
Registered: Jul 2006

posted 02-25-2010 03:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ea757grrl   Click Here to Email ea757grrl     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
We visited the Museum last June and can highly recommend it. It was a great day to be there: the Piedmont DC-3 was doing an engine run-up, and we got to see the Skystreak get towed outside and given a bath. And for those of you who remember the Florence Air and Missile Museum, the Mercury display is one of a few priceless artifacts (and aircraft) that were rescued after that museum closed.

If you get a chance to visit the Carolinas Air Museum, please do. It's a real treat, and worth the trip.

AFGAS
Member

Posts: 89
From: Merritt Island, FL
Registered: Feb 2008

posted 02-26-2010 06:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AFGAS   Click Here to Email AFGAS     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the heads up on the museum. And thanks also 747 for the info on Florence. I tried to stop there as I heard they had an Apollo BP there, but found I had missed by it by a couple months.

dogcrew5369
Member

Posts: 547
From: Statesville, NC
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 02-26-2010 07:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for dogcrew5369   Click Here to Email dogcrew5369     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As I mentioned the Florence museum rescue, I remember visiting it as a child several times on our way back from Myrtle Beach. I got my first space patch there, a shuttle program patch, that I still have. I still have some silent 8mm film that was dubbed to VHS my Dad took in the '70s while there. I still remember the huge Titan missile on display there. Our museum has several airplanes rescued from Florence.

Space Possum
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Posts: 32
From: USA
Registered: Feb 2008

posted 03-02-2010 05:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Space Possum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the posts. It's been YEARS since I've been to the museum. I should be ashamed since it's just down the road from me. I'll have to make a visit soon!

Lou Chinal
Member

Posts: 946
From: Staten Island, NY
Registered: Jun 2007

posted 03-04-2010 11:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Lou Chinal   Click Here to Email Lou Chinal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Mercury there is a mock-up (a very good one I must admit). Are we are talking about the old Life and Science Museum of Florence? I remember an old Redstone they had outside rusting away.

ea757grrl
Member

Posts: 555
From: South Carolina
Registered: Jul 2006

posted 03-04-2010 02:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ea757grrl   Click Here to Email ea757grrl     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Florence museum in question would have been the Florence Air and Missile Museum adjacent to the Florence airport. Here's an old website that's like a virtual tour of how the place looked.

I always wished I had a few million dollars to pour into the place. There were some wonderful one-off and castoff items there...sort of the aviation version of a curio shop or antique mall. I loved it, and miss it still.

jodie

dogcrew5369
Member

Posts: 547
From: Statesville, NC
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 03-06-2010 10:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for dogcrew5369   Click Here to Email dogcrew5369     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Interesting seeing the Constellation photos at the old Florence museum. Last I knew of it, a Carolinas Aviation Museum volunteer that I won't name here, had purchased the forward fuselage of the old Connie for $2,000 and was going to fix it up on his property as a living quarters. I know, sounds a little weird, but surely a diehard aviation buff. Wish I had gotten down to the museum before it closed.

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