Paul and I visited the Air & Space Museum which is divided into many galleries with exhibits emphasizing the contribution San Diego has made to aviation. In 2005 the museum became affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution and is one of only ten aerospace museums in the country with such affiliation. Sections include the entry Rotunda, Special Exhibit area, World War I Gallery, Golden Age of Flight Gallery World War II Gallery, Modern Jet & Space Age Gallery and the Pavilion of flight. There are also a number of early aviation exhibits hanging from the ceiling. Several aircraft engines are on display.
A reproduction of the Spirit of St. Louis is in the entry Rotunda.
In the large central pavilion there are several large aircraft overhead that include the Consolidated PBY-5ACatalina, Mikoyan-Gurevick MIG-17, Mercury spacecraft (mock-up), Bell AH-1E Cobra and Ford 5-AT-B Trimotor. There is also the Wee Bee, once considered the world’s smallest plane.
|The Wee Bee|
|Ford 5-AT-B Trimotor|
|A Gee Bee racing plane|
|Another view of the Gee Bee|
examples of barnstormers, air mail pilots and the first airlines of the Twenties and Thirties.
|stunt man catching onto ladder from plane|
In the World War II gallery there are examples of the Flying Tigers that flew over China to the carrier pilots over the Pacific. A recent addition is the Nazi Horten 229 flying wing. Never in production
|Apollo XVII mockup|
The current special exhibit was about innovations by Leonardo da Vince which also included reproductions of several of his paintings
|A robot in armor|