By: Katrina Pescador and Mark Aldrich
Founded by Reuben H. Fleet in 1923, Consolidated Aircraft Corporation (later Convair) became one of the most significant aircraft manufacturers in American history. For roughly sixty years this prolific company was synonymous with San Diego and, except for the United States Navy, the largest single employer in the County. Whole sections of the city were designed to meet the needs and provide homes for the workers and their families. When shifts at the plant changed the streets were full of the men and women who were responsible for building some of the most significant aircraft in aviation history, including the PBY Catalina, B-24 Liberator, Convair 880 airliner, F-102 Delta Dagger, as well as the reliable Atlas missile, which was vital in launching America into space. To this day, nearly a decade after the company passed from the San Diego scene, tens of thousands of San Diegans can celebrate a seminal connection with Reuben Fleet, his company and his popular slogan, Nothing short of right is right.
By: Katrina Pescador and Alan Renga
For nearly a century, San Diego has been a hub of aviation development, air power, and flying adventure. The city's ideal weather and protected bay allowed San Diego to have an aviation history unrivaled by any local community. From the pioneering days of Glenn Curtiss and naval aviation at North Island to the present cutting-edge aerospace technology, Aviation in San Diego captures it all. With many never-before-published photographs, Aviation in San Diego documents the people and events that made San Diego's aviation heritage unique. From Ryan to Consolidated, Curtiss to Lindbergh, and everything in between, Aviation in San Diego is the preeminent photographic record of flight in "America's Finest City." The book contains 127 pages of rare photographs taken from the San Diego Air & Space Museum's archive collection.
By: Ray Wagner
This book is the only complete reference to all the airplanes that created American airpower. It tells the story of the marriage between aircraft and war. Every combat type built in the United States for the Air Force, Navy, or for foreign governments is included, together with foreign aircraft bought for American fighting units. All the planes designed to attack an enemy with guns, bombs, or rockets are described, along with armed reconnaissance aircraft, and those derived from fighter designs, providing a quick reference for each type. Along with famous mass-production types, like the Liberator, Mustang, and Hellcat, with their major modifications, all the little-known experimental projects are included and compared. Ray Wagner's definitive work arranges all those planes by their fighting purpose and appearance in history. Even by simply viewing their photographs page by page, the reader sees the story of combat plane design over the years. Below each picture are the vital facts of each type: the engine's name and power, how big and how heavy that plane is, as well as how fast, how high, and how far it can go. Profusely illustrated with 1700 photographs, American Combat Planes of the 20th Century is 758 pages, hardcover, printed on high quality coated stock, with a section of color photographs showing the history of military airplane color configurations.
By: Katrina Pescador and Karen Garcia Raines
The Museum is pleased to announce the publication of Wheels to Wings: San Diego's Ford Building. This limited edition was released for the 75th anniversary in May 2010. The book narrates the history of the last Ford Exposition building still in existence. Starting with Henry Ford's interest in industrial exhibitions and ending with the building contemporary status as home to the San Diego Air & Space Museum, the book features numerous detailed photos illustrating the building's history from 1935 to the present. Wheels to Wings presents the fascinating history of San Diego's Ford building in a simple, well articulated manner that all can enjoy.
By: Alan Renga and Mark E. Mentges
The Museum is proud to announce a new book, Pacific Southwest Airlines¸ through Arcadia Publishing. The book features unique photos, many of them never seen before, highlighting the history of this historic airline. With its low fares and friendly service, Pacific Southwest Airlines (PSA ) was one of the most successful regional airlines in American history. Its distinctive orange, red, and white planes, complete with a beaming smile were immediately recognizable to those living on the West Coast. The airline was also known for employing beautiful and sociable flight attendants. Kenny Friedkin, the founder of PSA , started in 1949 with one leased DC -3 and expanded his fleet to serve millions of passengers each year. Although PSA is no longer in operation, its successful business model of low-priced, efficient service was copied by other airlines and today is considered the norm. In addition, former PSA employees still gather annually to relive the camaraderie they experienced as being a part of one of the most unique airlines of all time.