THE LIBERTY FOUNDATION
Ye Olde Pub (B-17F Flying Fortress) is coming to a town near you in 2019!
Ye Olde Pub the newly painted B-17 usually flies between 10am and 3pm each day with ground tours after the day's last flight. If you're in or around any of these upcoming stops, we welcome you to come out and see the plane when on tour in 2019. B-17 flights are $450 for non Liberty Foundation members and $410 for foundation members.
To take a flight in our Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress named the Ye Olde Pub, Call 678-589-7433 to schedule your flight!
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The B-17 was employed by the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) in the daylight precision strategic bombing campaign of World War II against German industrial and military targets. The United States Eighth Air Force, based at many airfields in southern England, and the Fifteenth Air Force, based in Italy, complemented the RAF Bomber Command's nighttime area bombing in the Combined Bomber Offensive to help secure air superiority over the cities, factories and battlefields of Western Europe in preparation for the invasion of France in 1944. The B-17 also participated to a lesser extent in the War in the Pacific, early in World War II, where it conducted raids against Japanese shipping and airfields. From its pre-war inception, the USAAC (later USAAF) touted the B-17 as a strategic weapon; it was a potent, high-flying, long-range bomber that was able to defend itself, and to return home despite extensive battle damage. It quickly took on mythic proportions,[ and widely circulated stories and photos of B-17s surviving battle damage increased its iconic status. With a service ceiling greater than any of its Allied contemporaries, the B-17 established itself as an effective weapons system, dropping more bombs than any other U.S. aircraft in World War II.
The Museum’s B-17G Bomber was manufactured by Lockheed-Vega and delivered to the U.S.A.A.F. on October 16, 1944. It was modified to be a “Pathfinder” B-17, equipped with the latest ground scanning H2X radar for nighttime bombing. It was used purely stateside in a training role during WW II before being dropped from the U.S.A.F. inventory in May 1959. In 1961, Albany Building Corporation purchased the B-17 and used it for hauling freight, before selling it in 1963 to Donthan Aviation Corp. who used the airplane as an agriculture sprayer. In 1979, Doc Hospers of Fort Worth, Texas purchased the airplane and restored it to flying condition. The airplane was then sold to Jerry Yagen at the Military Aviation Museum in 2009 before being purchased by Erickson in 2013. Of the B-17 “Pathfinders” that were built, it is the only one left in existence.
In January 2019 the museum’s B-17 the “Madras Maiden” was repainted as “Ye Olde Pub” as a tribute of honor to the crew who flew her. The Liberty Foundation is proud to announce it will be touring the only B-17 honoring “Ye Olde Pub” and the war story that restores your faith in humanity. Usually an old war story involves a moment of quiet in the midst of chaos. But how many of them have taken place in mid air?
On December 20, 1943, two enemy pilots met in the skies over Germany - An American, Charlie Brown - and a German, Franz Stigler. What transpired would be called: “WWII’s most incredible aerial encounter.” The unlikely encounter between one of German’s leading fighter aces and the rookie crew of an American bomber in the frigid skies of Germany in December 1943 - upon engaging the already damaged American plane, Stigler had mercy on his enemies and escorted them back to safety. See the book “A Higher Call”, for the entire story.
ALSO IN PARTNERSHIP WITH LIBERTY FOUNDATION TO TOUR OUR
P-51 MUSTANG IN 2019!
Our "Ye Olde Pub" B-17 and its P-51 Fighter Escort are both Coming to a Town Near You in 2019!
Our WWII aircraft usually flies between 10am and 3pm each day with ground tours after the day's last flight. If you're in or around any of these upcoming stops, we welcome you to come out and see the plane on the following dates. B-17 flights are $475 for non-Liberty Foundation members and $435 for foundation members. P-51 flights are $1995.00 ($1955.00 members).
Experience the ultimate history lesson! Call Cayla, our Tour Coordinator, at 678-589-7433 to schedule your flight!
May 24, 25 & 26, 2019 - P-51 Rides - Merced County Castle Airport, Atwater, CA.
CALL 678-589-7433 TO BOOK YOUR FLIGHT
NORTH AMERICAN P-51D MUSTANG
The classic P-51 Mustang is one of the greatest success stories of military aviation. Originally designed for Great Britain, the North American fighter was adopted by the U.S. Army Air Force and upgraded with the powerful, reliable Rolls-Royce Merlin which powered the Supermarine Spitfire. With altitude, range, and performance, the Merlin Mustang became a world beater.
Ironically, the P-51 owed its existence to a Royal Air Force query for North American to build Curtiss P-40s at a time when British forces were being pushed off the European continent in 1940 and badly needed additional armament. North American proposed a better performing aircraft and quickly drafted the NA-73.
The Allison-powered Mustang flew 12 months after the first RAF query and logged its first combat missions in May 1942. Intended for reconnaissance, their primary "armament" was a camera , though two .30 and two .50 caliber guns were installed. Eventually 15 RAF squadrons flew the type. Meanwhile, the Army Air Force tested the XP-51 and was impressed with its performance, which exceeded the P-39 and P-40 and some marks of Spitfire in low-level performance. Beginning in 1943 the USAAF began operating photo-reconnaissance Mustangs (originally the Apache in US service) and A-36 Invader dive bombers, also with Allison engines. However, the promise of improved high-altitude performance had been noted, and a Merlin-powered XP-51B first flew in late 1942. Production B and C models began rolling out of the Inglewood and Dallas factories in 1943, and by year end the 354th Pioneer Mustang Group was escorting heavy bombers over Germany. The D model, with its 360-degree full-vision canopy, appeared in March 1944 and replaced the "razorback" models by year end.
The museum's P-51D Mustang was built under license to North American in 1944 by Australia's Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) in Melbourne, Australia. The aircraft participated in Atomic Bomb testing by the Australians after WW II and served 10 years as a target tow plane before falling into private ownership, being acquired by the museum in 1983.
CALL 678-589-7433 TO BOOK YOUR FLIGHT
"In partnership with Big Mountain Heli Tours in Bend, the Erickson Aircraft Museum now offers scenic helicopter flights from surrounding Bend resorts and the Bend Airport, Sunriver, and Sisters to our museum in Madras. Add on your own flight with us when you arrive or drop by a local vineyard after your tour with us. Perfect for weddings, proposals, or corporate events originating from Bend and the surrounding areas. Let fly!”