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P-40 Kittyhawk at Palm Springs Air Museum
Palm Springs Air Museum visit November, 2008

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Curtiss P-40 Warhawk (Kittyhawk) Miss Josephine

P-40 Warhawk, Palm Springs Air Museum - California

The P-40 Warhawk was a single-seat pursuit fighter manufactured by Curtiss-Wright Airplane Division, Buffalo, New York. The British called it the Tomahawk and for later versions, Kittyhawk. The XP-40 was first flown in October 1938 and production of the P-40 continued from 1939 to 1944. Approximately 14,000 of various models were built.

P-40 is read as follows: "P" designated pursuit fighter. "40" designated the 40th new fighter designed and built for the U.S. Army Air Corps. Photo taken on visit to Palm Springs Air Museum.

Text from the sign written by Jesse Brain reads, "The P-40 Warhawk was powered by one 1040 to 1,425 hp Allison or Packard liquid cooled V-12 piston engine. When loaded it weighed 7,215 pounds to 11,400 pounds and had a wing span of 35 feet 4 inches. It was armed with a maximum of (6) .50 inch fixed, forward firing machine guns and a maximum of (3) 500 pound bombs.

"The P-40 flew as a fighter and fighter-escort in all theaters of the war. P-40s were at the Aleutians, Bougainville, the Central Pacific offensive, the invasion of Sicily, the North African campaign and many others. Night fighting P-40s equipped with a 40 mm cannon were based at the Suez in Egypt and were very effective in the campaign against Rommel's tanks and in severing Germany's supply lines to Rommel's forces in North Africa.

"The P-40, fortunately, was available when World War II broke out. It was a capable, rugged aircraft. It kept us in the air war, but it was not the aircraft which could control the skies for the U.S. Army Air Corps. Control of the sky began when the P-40 was replaced by the fast, high performance P-38, P-47 and P-51 fighters.

Warhawk outside Palm Springs Air Museum - California

"The P-40 in the Air Museum is a two seater, dual control trainer called the TP-40N. It was converted to bridge the gap between the AT-5 advanced trainer and the high performance fighters in front-line service. It survived as a museum piece with the Smithsonian and the Air Force Museum." It is maintained in flying condition and is named "Miss Josephine". Photo to the right is courtesy of the Palm Springs Air Museum.

Also see on our website

P-40 Warhawk - Planes of Fame
Warhawk - War Eagles Air Museum
P-40 Warhawk - American Aircraft



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