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Deplaning at Oshkosh: 1952

Deplaning at Oshkosh: 1952

May 1952. Kodachrome by my great-uncle Herbert F. Krahn of Oshkosh, Wisconsin. I have no idea who any of the people are in this image, but I assume that someone on the plane flew into Oshkosh to visit Herbert and my great-aunt. Note that the pilot appears to be waving from the cockpit. View full size.

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Great stories on this well-traveled DC-3. I still think that simple, rugged airplane is beautiful and I would love to ride in one someday. I remember as a kid seeing them fly over with that gleaming shiny metal skin they all had at that time. I think they are all painted now, but these masterpieces of aviation will probably fly forever. Beautiful.

Magical Mystery Hop

In 1970, maybe, I hitched a ride (lift?) on a DC-3 flying for long-gone St. Thomas Tax-Air, from Beef Island to Charlotte Amalie. Since I was the only passenger (hence the free ride) I was invited to sit in the co-pilot's seat. Cigarettes were flicked out the sliding window. But when the pilot began enjoying an odd looking cigarette, well, it certainly made the trip even more memorable, if that could be possible.

All ended well, and he even got me comped on a BWIA flight to San Juan.


The aircraft in KAP's post is XA-KTP, not XA-XTP. Not sure if that matters. If the plane in KAP's post is the same as N14931, then it was converted to a cargo plane configuration at some point, as the windows are gone. I suspect they are different aircraft. The most recent picture in the link provided by Mercury appears to be from 1996. Hard to fathom that anyone would convert a 60 year old aircraft's airframe. Just thinking out loud...

Some Assembly Required

According to Google Maps, the former N14931 and later XA-XTB is still on the tarmac in Laredo, although it likely won't be taking passengers anywhere soon:

Back in the day

I vividly remember being on a jet plane taxiing and passing a DC-3 with the pilot leaning out the window wearing a "thousand hour crush" cap.

Herman the Duck!!

Herman (just forward of the passenger door) was seen on all iterations of Wisconsin Central, North Central and Republic Airlines aircraft.

Those were the days

As a passenger I flew in many a DC-3 overseas.

One trip in the States, 1956, we went from New York to Chicago on Eastern Airlines. Puddle jumper. Lots of takeoffs and landings. Kids were welcome in the cockpit; there were plenty of games for them, supplied by the airline. Also wings were given to the kids. Lots of neat stuff.

Sadly, don't have those anymore. But I do remember those days.

Still intact in Texas

N14931 was built in 1939 and went into service with TWA. From there it was in service with Wisconsin Central, Shorter, Shamrock, Bahamas Air, Argosy, Hawk, ProAir and Coastal Airways. It then moved to Mexico and was re-registered as XA-XTB.

From there it was eventually relocated to Laredo, Texas, where it supposedly still sits today.


N14931 is a DC-3 built in 1939 and still going strong until deregistered in 1989. They were hard to kill.

Scroll to bottom of page for more recent images of this beautiful plane.

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