Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   
Warplane Survivors USA: Rhode Island (Book)

Rhode Island Warplanes

Data current to 29 April 2018.

North American F-51D-25NA Mustang (Serial No. 44-72750), 152d Fighter Squadron, Rhode Island Air National Guard, 1954.  (USGOV-PD Photo)

Douglas C-47 Skytrain (Serial No. 0-477687), Rhode Island Air National Guard, 1957.  (Bill Larkins Photo)

 (Gerard van der Schaaf Photo)

Lockheed C-130J Hercules (Serial No. 99-1431), 143rd Airlift Squadron, Rhode Island Air National Guard.

 (Oren Rozen Photo)

Lockheed C-130J Hercules (Serial No. 99-1431), 143rd Airlift Squadron, Rhode Island Air National Guard, 2016.


This aviation handbook is designed to be used as a quick reference to the classic military heritage aircraft that have been restored and preserved in the Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut. The aircraft include those fl own by members of the US Air Force, the US Navy, the US Army, the US Marine Corps, the US Coast Guard, the Air and Army National Guard units in each state, and by various NATO and allied nations as well as a number of aircraft previously operated by opposition forces in peace and war. The interested reader will find useful information and a few technical details on most of the military aircraft that have been in service with active flying squadrons both at home and overseas.

120 selected photographs have been included to illustrate a few of the major examples in addition to the serial numbers assigned to American military aircraft. For those who would like to actually see the aircraft concerned, aviation museum locations, addresses and contact phone numbers, websites and email addresses have been included, along with a list of aircraft held in each museum's current inventory or that on display as gate guardians throughout the New England States. The aircraft presented in this edition are listed alphabetically by manufacturer, number and type.

Although many of New England's heritage warplanes have completely disappeared, a few have been carefully collected, restored and preserved, and some have even been restored to flying condition. This guide-book should help you to find and view New England's Warplane survivors.

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Rhode Island Warplane Survivors


North American SNJ-5 Texan (Serial No. 43936), Reg. No. N241F, Frank J. Govednik III, 2 Chester Ave, Bristol, RI 02809-1416.

North Kingstown, Quonset Air Museum, 488 Eccleston Ave., North Kingstown, RI 02852.  This museum is now closed.

Founded in September 1992, the Quonset Air Museum was dedicated as an educational facility whose current mission is to preserve and interpret Rhode Island’s aviation Heritage.  The museum's collection includes military vehicles, missiles, aircraft and over 5000 smaller aviation artifacts.  An extensive archive of books, magazines, manuals, photos, documents and blueprints is preserved within the Quonset Air Museum.  The collection represents Rhode Island's achievement in private, commercial, and military aviation.

The museum occupies Painting Hangar No. 488 located at what was once the Quonset Naval Air Station.  This 50,000 sq. ft. facility is one of only three existing specialized wood and brick hangars built during WWII.  Current restoration projects the Walt Schiebe Restoration Area include a TBM Avenger, F6F Hellcat, and an F3D Skyknight.  Other notable aircraft in the collection are the last surviving Curtis XF15C mixed propulsion prototype and a twin tail C1A COD.  This one of a kind aircraft was the precursor to the E-1 Electronic Counter Measure aircraft and has the distinction of being the last aircraft to fly from Quonset Naval Air Station upon its closure in 1974.  The museum houses several Vietnam era combat aircraft as well as the legendary F-14 Tomcat.  Aircraft in the museum’s collection:

Aero Commander 680 (Serial No. 680-432-105), Reg. No. N2100M

Aero L-29 Delphin (Serial No. 490925)

Antonov AN-2TD Colt (Serial No. 1G2619)

Bell UH-1B Iroquois (Serial No. 64-14021)

Bell UH-1H Iroquois (Serial No. 64-13492)

Bell UH-1H Iroquois (Serial No. 65-09560)

Bell UH-1H Iroquois (Serial No. 65-09996)

Bell UH-1M Iroquois (Serial No. 66-15083), served with the 57th Aviation Company in Vietnam as a gunship.

 (Author Photo)

Bell AH-1S Cobra (Serial No. 66-15317), donated by the Rhode Island Army National Guard.

Bell OH-58A Kiowa (Serial No.)

Cessna T-37B Tweet (Serial No. 66-7983), in parts.

 (USN Photo)

Curtiss XF15C-1 mixed-power fighter prototype in flight.

 (Author Photos)

Curtiss XF15C-1 (BuNo. 01215)

DeHavilland D.H.100 Vampire (Serial No.), ex-Swiss Air Force.

 (Author Photos)

Douglas AD-5W Skyraider (BuNo. 135188).

 (Author Photos)

Douglas F3D-2Q Skyknight (BuNo. 124620)

Douglas A-4C Skyhawk (BuNo. 147790)

 (Author Photos)

Douglas A-4F Skyhawk (BuNo. 155027), Blue Angels.

 (Author Photos)

McDonnell Douglas A-4M Skyhawk (BuNo. 158148), SD-8, 1st A-4M built

Eaglet (Serial No.)

Fouga CM 170R Magister (Serial No.).

Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat (Serial No. 70185), being restored.

 (Author Photo)

Grumman F6F ¾-scale Hellcat (Serial No. 1), Reg. No. N6FN, 3, built by Al Sparling.

 (Author Photos)

Grumman A-6B Intruder (BuNo. 155629), AG-501.

Grumman C-1A Trader (BuNo. 136780), cockpit only.

 (Author Photos)

Grumman C-1A Trader (BuNo. 136792), converted to prototype E-1.

 (Author Photos)

Grumman F-14B Tomcat (BuNo. 162591), AD-260, C/N 513

Hughes OH-6A Cayuse (Serial No. 67-16265).

Hughes OH-6A Cayuse (Serial No. 67-16279).

 (Author Photo)

Hughes OH-6A Cayuse (Serial No. 67-16570).

 (Author Photos)

Ling-Tempco-Vought A-7D Corsair II (Serial No. 75-0408)

Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star (Serial No. 53-6091), in parts.

 (Author Photo)

Lockheed TV-2 Shooting Star (BuNo. 137936), USMC.

 (Author Photos)

Lockheed P2V Neptune (BuNo. 131403), C/N 426-5272.

McDonnell F-4A Phantom II (BuNo. 148252).

 (Author Photo)

McDonnell F-4B Phantom II (BuNo. 148371).


 (Author Photos)

McDonnell Douglas AV-8C Harrier (BuNo. 158710).

Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 Fagot (Serial No.).

 (Author Photos)

Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-17F/LIM 6bis Fresco C (Serial No. 1FO326), 325, Polish Air Force.

 (Author Photos)

MIM-14 Nike Hercules surface-to-air missile.

North American T-28S Fennec (Serial No. 51-3529).

 (Author Photos)

Northrop T-38A Talon (Serial No. 63-8197), in parts.

Piasecki/Vertol CH-21C Shawnee (Serial No. 51-15892)

 (Author Photos)

Sikorsky SH-3H Sea King Helicopter (Serial No. 149738)

Stinson L-9B Voyager (Serial No.)

North Kingstown, Quonset State Airport, Rhode Island Air National Guard, 143rd Airlift Wing.  This air guard unit is the only cargo operator of the Lockheed C-130J Super Hercules in the Northeast.

Bell AH-1 Cobra (Serial No. 67-15530, painted as Serial No. 70-16530

Bell UH-1B Iroquois Helicopter (Serial No. 62-0233)

Hughes OH-6A Cayuse (Serial No. 67-16627)


Roy Knabenshue was a builder and exhibitor of dirigibles of his own design.  His outstanding contributions to aviation include making balloon flights and being the first to pilot a steerable balloon.  He also piloted the first successful American dirigible.  In addition, he also became well-known by building US Army observation balloons during World War I.

Roy turned to ballooning to supplement his income because wages for a telephone man were not enough to support his large family.  Because of his family’s standing in the community and their embarrassment with his ballooning venture, he changed his name to “Professor Don Carlos” during the early days of his flying.

His first successful dirigible with constructed with an engine designed and built by Glenn Curtiss, in 1904.  The second was built in August of 1905.  He flew it over New York’s Central Park, and stopped all traffic with the unusual sight.

In 1907 Knabenshue's third dirigible was completed and flown in exhibitions at Providence, Rhode Island; Hartford, Connecticut; Worchester, Massachusetts and London, Ontario.  In the latter part of the year Knabenshue began building a three-man airship designed to carry passengers, and also for exhibition work.

By late 1909, public interest began to turn to airplanes and the Wright Brothers decided to put on flight exhibitions.  They employed Knabenshue to plan exhibitions for the Wright Fliers being trained at a flying school in Montgomery, Alabama opened in March 1910, now known as Maxwell Field.

Knabenshue arranged for the first exhibition at the Indianapolis Speedway in June 1910.  In July, the team performed at Atlantic City and in August the team made exhibition flights along the Chicago Lake Front.  In October the team also participated in the Belmont Park International Air Meet.