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463rd Bombardment Group / The Swoose   (page 2)
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Col. Frank Kurtz and crew of the
B-17G model  "Swoose"  of the 463rd

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According to Wikipedia: On 3 November 2007 the Air and Space Museum's collections committee, an advisory group on the acquisition and transfer of aircraft, had voted 54 on 28 September 2007 for deaccessioning The Swoose, and transfer it to the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. The panel forwarded its decision to Gen. John R. "Jack" Dailey, the museum director, and Donald S. Lopez Sr., the deputy director, who subsequently decided to stand by the committee's recommendation. "There were good arguments on both sides," said Dailey, who had requested a collections review to alleviate a storage crunch at the Silver Hill, Maryland, facility where The "Swoose" has been stored since 1961. The "Swoose" has never been in a plan to be displayed, Dailey said. A recommended condition of this transfer was that the National Museum of the United States Air Force transfer ownership of a restored B-17 to the National Air Space Museum's Udvar V. Hazy site for display, as that museum lacks a B-17. The matter was discussed by the governing board of the Dayton museum, and with the recent arrival of the B-17F Memphis Belle it was decided that continued display of the Museum's B-17G "Shoo Shoo Baby" would be unnecessary. Upon completion of the restoration and display of the "Swoose", estimated to occur in 2011, the B-17G "Shoo Shoo Baby" will be transferred to the Washington D.C. museum for display (Memphis Belle is not expected to be completed until 2015). This decision raised some concerns among the staff and patrons of the Dayton museum, as "Shoo Shoo Baby" is one of the world's finest restored examples of a B-17G, and has been a popular exhibit at the museum for many years. It was eventually pointed out that with the display of the "Swoose" and eventual display of the Memphis Belle the National Museum of the United States Air Force will possess the world's two most historically significant B-17s, and another B-17G model can easily be obtained when funds and space become available.

On 15 July 2008 the Swoose was permanently transferred to the National Museum of the United States Air Force for restoration and display. It was placed in the Museum's restoration facility alongside the Memphis Belle.

"We are pleased that The Swoose is coming to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force," said senior curator Terry Aitken. "The transfer between the two federal institutions is a demonstration of good stewardship of our national historic collection. Our museum's restoration staff will use their experience and expertise being gained from the restoration of the famous Memphis Belle to accurately restore The Swoose, which is so important to our history."

As of fall 2008, the NMUSAF has begun restoration of the Swoose. The Swoose has undergone a limited inspection and a more extensive and detailed technical inspection is planned. Based on the findings, the museum will determine how to best restore and display the historic aircraft. The extensive restoration is expected to take a number of years. The Swoose is being restored at the same time as Memphis Belle,[5] though it is expected the Swoose restoration will be completed many years before Memphis Belle.

The 2010 Annual Report, the USAF museum reported: "Work progressed on tail cone components, keel beam, main landing gear, forward fuselage, and lower belly machine gun. ..."


463rd Historical Society
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