You can search the photo archives of the Alberta Aviation Museum by entering keywords into the box below.
You can also select to browse images a particular category or images by selecting a category or
"Browse All Images" link below.
Painting, Information Board
The information board measures 10 1/4 inches by 21 3/4 inches.
The history of the painting from the information board is "In 1942 the United States instituted a lend lease program designed to assist Russia in the war effort. During the years of 1942 and 1943. Thousands of aircraft were ferried from the United States to Russia via the northern route.
The City of Edmonton, with a population of just under 100, 000 played a vital role in the northern route. Edmonton's airport (Blatchford Field) became a strategic site for the re-fueling and repairing of aircraft en-route to Russia. Despite the large volume of aircraft passing through Edmonton during the two years, few Edmontonians were aware what was happening. Only personnel who were directly involved with the airport, or citizens living in close proximity of same, would witness the increase in Military aircraft traffic. During this period in time there was no mention in newspapers or on radio, of this vast movement of aircraft as it was classified as an official military secret. It would not be until the latter part of 1943 that the United States Secretary of Defence would make an explanatory statement.
On September 23, 1943 on a beautiful fall Edmonton day, the Blatchford Field Airport facility established what was thought to be a North America record when 860 aircraft passed through en-route to Russia. Many of the aircraft passing through on this day were P-39 Bell Airacobras, as depicted in my painting" Reg Turner.
The second part of the information board is titled " Bell P-39 Airacobra" and the write up is as follows;
"The 'Cobra' was designed to be a light-weight fighter plane, however, by the time it was combat equipped it was slower and less maneuverable than most of its contemporaries. One of the major features in the armament of the 'Cobra' was the 38mm cannon that fired through the nose section of the aircraft. This provided the 'Cobra' with superior fire power in air to air combat missions. The 38mm cannon also provided the 'Cobra' with the necessary fire power to be utilized as ground attack aircraft. The Russian Air Force used the 'Cobra' very effectively in this capacity. The 'Cobra's' limited flying range was 1,100 miles, therefore they required an extra fuel tank thus enabling them to travel the great distance between re-fueling stops on the northern route to Russia. To solve this problem they were temporarily equipped with under-belly fuel pods. This provided them with the extra fuel they required. However, there was a down-side to this solution. The fuel pods installed on the under-belly of the 'Cobras' greatly effected the aero-dynamics of the plane making them difficult to fly. This resulted in mishaps that caused the loss of some of these aircraft, and the lives of a few pilots while ferrying them to Russia.
In many cases Russian pilots would be transported to Edmonton to undergo orientation and training on various aircraft in order to fly them back to their homeland, as an interesting aside, a friend of mine recalls working at Uncle Bens Sporting goods store which was located north of Jasper Avenue on 101 street , next door to the Rialto Theatre, he remembers many Russian pilots coming into shop at the store and the item they were most interested in purchasing was surprisingly Ronson cigarette lighters.
You will note the American Airforce insignia on the 'Cobras' once they had reached their final destination it was simply a matter of painting out the blue background and coloring the star red. They now became officially operational for the Russian Air Force." Reg Turner.
The Canadian Centennial Flag which is green with the Centennial Symbol in yellow in the centre of the flag and the years 1867 to 1967. The flag measures 6 feet by 4 feet.
The Northwest Territories Provincial Flag which is blue and white with the Provincial Crest in the middle. The flag measures 4 feet by 9 feet.
A certificate of Airworthiness from the Department of Transport, Canadian Air Transportation Administration, Civil Aeronautics for C-FMHW, Fleet Manufacturing Ltd, 80, Aircraft Serial Number 305, Category - Normal. The date of issue for this was May 19, 1976 and signed by the representative for the Minister of Transport. This was re-issued on March 30, 1977.
A Department of Transport - Official Receipt No. 212401. Office Air Reg Edm for $10.00 dated May 6 1976 on account of Test Flight Permit. Amount received from H. M. Heard, Edmonton, Alberta.
A Department of Transport - Official Receipt No. 212675. Office Air Reg Edm for $20.00 dated May 17, 1976 on account of C of A MHW. Amount received from G. H. Heard, Edmonton, Alberta.
A Warranty from King Radio corporation for aircraft model Fleet 80, aircraft registration no. C-FMHW. This warranty is for the installation of a used radio unit model no. KY-92, serial no. 20255 and unit model no. KT-76A and serial no. 50902. The registered owner is Mr. Graham Heard, 12214 - 102 Street, Edmonton, Alberta.
A Weight and Balance Report for the Fleet Model 80, TC 15 iss 4, Registration: CF-MHW. This is for the aircraft that is operated by Graham H. Heard, Box 55, Hinton, AB. The date of this report is May 6, 1976.
A General Inspection Form for all Piston Engine Powered Unpressurized Aircraft up to 4000 lbs. This is dated July 23, 1987 for the Fleet 80, registration CF-MHW. This is signed by Thomas A. Guy WGM 612 dated July 23, 1987.
A Lease Agreement dated June 1, 1965 between Frederick Keith Kennedy (Lessor) and Shirley E. L. Kennedy (Lessor) of 3179 Pt Grey Road, Vancouver BC and the Aero Club of BC (Lessee) of Pitt Meadows Airport, BC. Whereas the Lessor is the owner of an aircraft described as follows: Fleet 80 CF-MHW Serial Number 305 Engine No 47404.