The W.A.S.P. Museum

 


RANDY L. FREY

Founded in Quartzsite, Arizona: Training Ground for women pilots who aspired to be WASP!

 


An [undated] historical picture of a Panther on the flight deck of an unidentified ship. Most of these models were scrapped

The Panther designated for the W.A.S.P. Museum still sits unrestored on the U.S.S. Hornet at Alameda, California

The right side of the W.A.S.P. Museum's Panther Fighter Jet at it's current location in Alameda, California

The Panther's profile shows the need for a new canopy as well as other restoration efforts -- further damage has occurred in the care of the NAVY

Unknown to anyone when the Panther was rescued, this was a special 'photographic mission' model plane

Another photograph of the Panther at it's current location: The U.S.S. Hornet Museum in Alameda, California

The Panther upon arrival at the Quartzsite Museum needing a full restoration and barely escaping the scrap yard for the second time

The correct engine for the Panther aircraft the Curator tracked down and purchased for the jet fighter. It's missing today from the display in Alameda

The Panther was shipped by truck from Mesa to the W.A.S.P. Museum -- at the expense of the W.A.S.P. Museum.

Arrival at the field adjacent to the W.A.S.P. Museum in Quartzsite.

Richard Oldham, Curator of the W.A.S.P. Museum, left, met with Senator Jon Kyle to present him with a press kit about the plight of the Panther

Women from all over the country took the once in a lifetime opportunities afforded them by the war effort

The WASP workers handled jobs that were both tedious and difficult earning themselves an irrefutable position in America's history

The WASP Museum is dedicated to preserving the history and heritage of women and flight

Experience Wanted

Though some of the the women of the W.A.S.P. came with experience, many came just wanting to learn to fly -- or to seize an opportunity to serve their country.

Women Airforce Service Pilots (left to right) Frances Green, Margaret Kirchner, Ann Waldner and Blanche Osborn at Lockbourne Army Air Field, Ohio 1944. These women pilots were some of the first to ferry B-17 “Flying Fortress” bombers. More than 1,000 Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) provided essential military air support in the United States during World War II.

(National Archives. U.S. Airforce photo - public domain)

From 1943, when the WASP program got underway until the women were unceremoniously dismised from duty in December 1944, these women flew literally millions of miles for the Army Air Forces. The women pictured here served at Camp Davis in Holly Ridge. U.S. Army photo.

Harlingen Army Air Field, Texas -- Elizabeth L. Gardner of Rockford, Illinois, posed for this picture just before takeoff.

Virginia Mae Hope, Women's Air Service Pilot, 1943.

date: 1943

source: Minnesota Historical Society Photograph Collection

ID: HE1.5 p90 (location)

Virginia Mae Hopebecame a W.A.S.P. in 1943,ferrying planes from one base to another. Virginia, a native of Winnebago, Minnesota, wasreportedly killed when 16 other pilots perished in a plane crash at Omaha, Nebraska on December 7, 1944.

Violet Cowden reportedly flew some 19 various types of "pursuit planes" during World War II, including the Mustang,as she ferried new aircraft from factories to destinations at military bases throughout the country.

Violet Cowden in the 21st Century!

Click on the Pictures to View in Full Screen Format

When viewing the enlarged version, Watch for Arrowed ICON to appear -- it will let you view the picture in various sizes suitable for reading even small text imprinted on the photograph.

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Last modified: 09/11/12