Military History Books
by Harold A. Skaarup   www.SilverHawkAuthor.com   
 
Warplanes of the Second World War preserved in Switzerland

Warplanes of the Second World War preserved in Switzerland

The aim of this website is to locate, identify and document Warplanes from the Second World War preserved in Switzerland.  Many contributors have assisted in the hunt for these aircraft to provide and update the data on this website.  Photos are as credited.  Any errors found here are by the author, and any additions, corrections or amendments to this list of Warplane Survivors of the Second World War in Switzerland would be most welcome and may be e-mailed to the author at hskaarup@rogers.com.

Data current to 23 Oct 2018.

Switzerland during the Second World War

Although Switzerland remained neutral throughout the Second World War, it had to deal with numerous violations of its airspace by combatants from both sides – initially by German aircraft, especially during their invasion of France in 1940. Zealous Swiss pilots attacked and shot down eleven German aircraft, losing two of their own, before a threatening memorandum from the German leadership forced General Guisan to forbid air combat above Swiss territory.

Later in the war, the Allied bomber offensive sometimes took US or British bombers into Swiss airspace, either damaged craft seeking safe haven or even on occasions bombing Swiss cities by accident.  Swiss aircraft would attempt to intercept individual aircraft and force them to land, interning the crews.  Only one further Swiss pilot was killed during the war, shot down by a US fighter in September 1944.  From September red and white neutrality bands were added to the wings of aircraft to stop accidental attacks on Swiss aircraft by Allied aircraft.

From 1943 Switzerland shot down American and British aircraft, mainly bombers, overflying Switzerland during the Second World War: six by Swiss air force fighters and nine by flak guns, and 36 airmen were killed.  On 1 October 1943 the first American bomber was shot down near Bad Ragaz: Only three men survived.  The officers were interned in Davos, airmen in Abelboden.  The representative of the U.S. military in Bern, U.S. military attaché Barnwell R. Legge, instructed the soldiers not to attempt to escape, in order to allow the U.S. Legation to coordinate their escape attempts.  The majority of the soldiers thought it was a diplomatic ruse or did not receive the instruction directly.

On 1 October 1944 Switzerland housed 39,670 internees in all: 20,650 from Italy, 10,082 from Poland, 2,643 from the United States, 1,121 from the United Kingdom (including five Australians), 822 from the Soviet Union and 245 from France.  In September the American Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was commissioned by the U.S. supreme command to organize the escapes of 1,000 American internees, but the task was not effectively accomplished before late winter 1944/45.  Soldiers who were caught after their escape from the internment camp, were often detained in the Wauwilermoos internment camp near Luzern.

Official Swiss records identify 6,501 airspace violations during the course of the war, with 198 foreign aircraft landing on Swiss territory and 56 aircraft crashing there.  (Wikipedia)

Swiss Transport Museum or Verkehrshaus der Schweiz (Transportation House of Switzerland) in Lucerne.  Opened in July 1959 and exhibits all forms of transportation including aircraft.

Flieger Flab Museum (Swiss Air Force Museum), Canton of Zurich, is locatedon the grounds of Dübendorf Air Base.  The collection was founded in 1972 by the Office for Military Airfields and dedicated to the history of Swiss military aviation and air defence.

 (Sandstein Photo)

Beechcraft Model 18 (C-45F, C-18S) as used by the Swiss Air Force and the Swiss Federal Office for National Topography from 1948 to 1967.  Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Sandstein Photo)

Bücker Bü 131-B trainer aircraft, flown by the Swiss Air Force from 1936 to 1971.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Gzzz Photo)

Bücker Bü 131 Jungmann, Reg. No. HB-URF.

 (Smolik Photo)

 (Sandstein Photos)

 (Paebi Photo)

EKW C-35 (Serial No. 180).  1930s Swiss two-seat reconnaissance biplane aircraft built by the Swiss Federal Construction Works (Eidgenoessische Konstruktionswerkestaette), K+W, Thun.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Hornet Driver Photos)

 (Smolik Photo)

 (Sandstein Photos)

 (Hornet Driver Photo)

EKW C-36 (Serial No. C-534).  Swiss multi-purpose combat aircraft of the 1930s and 1940s, built by the Eidgenoessische Konstruktionswerkestaette.  It was a single-engined monoplane with a crew of two.  It entered service in 1942, and despite being obsolete, remained in front line use until the early 1950s, and as a target tug until 1987.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Smolik Photo)

 (r=???? Photo)

 (Softeis Photo)

 (Wurzer Photo)

Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Wk. Nr. 4299), built in 1939, Swiss Air Force (Serial No. A-96).   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Keimzell Photo)

Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Wk. Nr.), Swiss Air Force (Serial No. A-98), Dittingen.

 (Hornet Driver Photo)

Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Wk. Nr.), Swiss Air Force (Serial No. A-99), Payenne.

 (Julian Herzog Photo)

 (Hornet Driver Photo)

Fieseler Fi 156 Storch (Wk. Nr.), Swiss Air Force (Serial No. HB-YKQ), Payenne.

 (Sandstein Photo)

Messerschmitt Bf 108 (Wk. Nr.), (Serial No. A-209), Swiss Air Force trainer.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Andre Wadman Photo)

 (Hornet Driver Photo)

Messerschmitt Bf 108 (Wk. Nr.), (Serial No. A-201), Swiss Air Force trainer.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Schweiz12 Photo)

 (Sandstein Photos)

Messerschmitt Bf 109E-3 (Wk. Nr.), (Serial No. J-355), flown by the Swiss Air Force, 1939-1948.   Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Hermann Keist Photo)

 (Smolik Photos)

Morane Saulnier MS.406 (EKW D-3801), (Serial No. J-276).  Flieger Flab Museum.

 (Sandstein Photos)

North American P-51D Mustang (Serial No. 44-73349), Swiss Air Force (Serial No. J-213), Flieger Flab Museum, Dubendorf.

 (Hornet Driver Photo)

North American P-51D Mustang (Serial No. J-901).