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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Granddad's C-47

Granddad's C-47

This is a scan of a battered print showing my grandfather in the cockpit of a C-47. My best guess is that this is in the last half of 1944 and in the US per his logbooks, but it could be as late as mid-'45 in Europe. I've recently discovered a stash of his wartime photos and will add more if there's any interest. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Fate of this aircraft

Sadly, it seems this particular C-47 crashed in October of 1948, killing its three crew members.

Operation Vittles = Berlin

Operation Vittles = Berlin Airlift. Big duh on me.

No, he wasn't involved in the airlift. The logs and my father's recollection have him based first in Naples and later in Paris (once he got to Europe, that is). I believe he returned to the US in October '45.

etaoin shrdlu cmfwyp vbgkqj xz

Sorry for the dee-lay

You know how it is, you start a new job and get busy, you get your hand caught in an Intertype and have a zillion stitches, and next thing you know, you haven't scanned any of the promised photos. But now I'm back, can almost type, and have a pile of stuff to scan.

Here's answers to what's been asked so far:

The serial number is indeed 43-49416. I don't know anything about Operation Vittles. Sadly, his pilot log is maddeningly vague. After flight training and his subsequent arrival in Europe, the origins and destinations of individual flights are no longer noted. A particular entry might read:

3-27-45 A.A.F. from 1417th AAFBU to EDATC

I also have some classified orders telling him to ferry a C-47 with unspecified classified equipment from Florida to Scotland. And a lot of other stuff like flight school "yearbooks" and thing not necessarily photographic or appropriate for this site. Maybe I'll put that stuff on my site and see if anyone can decipher any of it...

etaoin shrdlu cmfwyp vbgkqj xz

Serial #

Best guess as to the serial is 43-49416; looks like this is a Douglas built C-47 (built in their Oklahoma plant - the DK indicates that). It was begun as a C47B-15-DK, but it and several other aircraft were finished as C47B-16-DKs. Not much info available beyond that. Did your granddad's log indicate what squadron he was with at the time? Was he involved with Operation Vittles?


Do you have any with nose art? Add more, more, more!

Dear AndyKeck ...

My Dad was in WWII so I would like to see more of your photos. I'm a WWII addict so the more the better. Thanks

Serial #


Can you enlarge the identification block below the pilot's window so we can get the first digits of the a/c # (the last three appear to be painted on the nose - 416)

[Click "view full size." This is a user-submitted picture, so there is no larger version. - Dave]

Grandpa Pics

PLEASE!!!! More, more!!!!


So few old aviation photos relate directly to actual people. This shot is great. Your granddad looks like a cool guy.

Ha. Prepare for the deluge.

Deluges can be slow, yes?

etaoin shrdlu cmfwyp vbgkqj xz

Yes, there's interest

Add away!

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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