American Secret Projects: Fighters, Bombers, And Attack Aircraft, 1937-1945
American Secret Projects: Fighters, Bombers, and Attack Aircraft, 1937-1945
Much has been written about the combat aircraft that the United States built in their many variants and fielded in their tens of thousands during WWII, but it may be useful to briefly review that list again: B-17, B-24, B-25, B-26, B-32, B-29, P-38, P-39, P-40, P-47, P-51, A-20, A-26, A-31/35, SBD/A-24, SB2C/A-25, F4F/FM Wildcat, F6F, F4U, TBF, PBY, PBM and a number of others produced in numbers under 1000, such as the Mars and Coronado. And this list does not even consider the number of transports, liaison and training aircraft that were built.
In looking at this list it is important to note that only two of these aircraft were actually designed and flown prior to 1937 - the PBY and the Boeing Model 299, the B-17's predecessor . NONE of the others were designed prior to 1937, but all the others had at least been committed to paper and many had flown prior to the U.S.'s entry into WII in December, 1941.
So while the incredible industrial might of the U.S. has been often and deservedly talked about, the amazing design and intellectual might behind it has been given very...