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Significant Memorabilia

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    Significant Memorabilia

    Hi All,

    A recent post relating to die cast models spawned this thread.

    What is your most significant piece of memorabilia? Regardless of perceived commercial value, scarcity or even quality. It is an item that has sincere personal meaning to the individual.

    I fortunately have an array of items from my Dad's service in WWII and Korea, some of which only came to light after his passing. Probably one of the most poignant are the goggles that were blasted off his face during a low level strike in Korea. The frame is buckled and one lens is shattered.

    What is your most significant piece of memorabilia?



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    Author: 'Without Precedent', 'Down to Earth' and '50 Tales of Flight'

    The logbook of an RCAF pilot who flew Spit XIIs with both 41 and 91 Squadron.

    I took it back to England in 1985 for the 41 Squadron reunion and it was autographed by a number of 41 Squadron Spit drivers.

    It's priceless to me.


      Nice idea for a thread Nostalgair!

      For me, it's my late father's diary from his time on an MU (number eludes me at the moment, sadly) whilst serving in the Med in WW2. Sometimes mundane stuff, sometimes moving and very often, very funny! Also, some of the few snapshops he managed to take whilst out there. They're safely tucked away in an album and rarely come out!

      Unfortunately, his first diary, covering his brief stint in the Home Guard in Sheffield and his time with 222 Sqn and 96 Sqn has been lost - unless a relative has it.

      He was an LAC (Engines and Airframes), mainly on Merlin-powered types. I just wish I had managed to extract some first hand accounts from him before he passed away in 2001.

      Last edited by cdp206; 3rd December 2007, 13:16.
      I think my education is wearing off!
      Noel & Chris' Aviation Pages
      Airfield Information Exchange


        Probably the piece I hold as important to me, is a small part of B-17 42-97746 of the 398th BG(H).
        This was from the crash site at Anstey Church moat, near station 131 Nuthampstead. The Pilot, Capt Charles Khourie, was killed along with the rest of his crew on the 15th October 1944, when the B-17 crashed on take off. He was billeted for a short while, in my grandmothers house.
        The piece was recovered back in 1981 when archaeologists were excavating the moat for more ancient artifacts.

        Hertfordshire Airfields Memorial Group

        Hunsdon, Sawbridgeworth and Matching Green airfields..


          I have a fan blade off XM607....or so it says on the sticker on the base.Bought it years ago at i think Mildenhall.


            A sump off a Merlin engine that came out of a Mustang. The engine must have seized since there was a dent in the sump where a connecting rod struck it.

            It's neat to see it hanging on the wall of my workshop.
            Steven Smart

            Hurricane aficionado, and Classical Guitar....



              I have a letter witten by my great great uncle from ANZAC Cove on the eve of the battle of Lone Pine (and one just after), I know it is not aviation related but I can post a scan if anyone is interested.
              Facebook: Aussie Cockpits



                They'd bite your hand off here for that!
                (assuming you aren't a member already...)

                My one is Lady Bader's programme for one of the Spitfire 60th airshows. Allegedly. No identifying marks, but given to me by someone who does her gardening. I've been offered a tidy sum for it when I mentioned it on here before but sorry, that one stays!

                "Snow clearing equipment has been found under snowdrift" - message sent from RNAS Hatston, Orkney, 1944.


                  I also have some dials and a false horizon from aircraft from the famouse Failsworth dump which my Uncle gave to me,not sure what they came off but i had fun as a kid playing fighter pilot in the Firefly cockpits !


                    The badges my Grandmother gave me from when she worked at CAC. She was one of the first women employees at Fisherman's Bend, and is now 93.

                    (The smallest says 'Wirraway' in 1.5mm writing. She wasn't an executive - that one was a gift, I think from her boss.)

                    I have a copy of the famous painting of HMAS Perth, aboard which my great uncle served as a lowly stoker. The aviation connection is that Perth was equipped with Seagull V or Walrus amphibian spotters, about which I wrote a book.

                    I also treasure two photos by me on the only occasion the Comet racer flew with the Comet airliner. One's just a nice portrait of G-ACSS, the other is when my camera jammed and it's a multiple exposure, which is actually quite intriguing. Both are unrepeatable...
                    James K

                    Looking and thinking...
                    Vintage Aero Writer: Blog & Details


                      I have a section of Jaguar Fin with the 16(R) Sqn 'Saint' figure, taken from XZ101.


                        Hi all , for me it would have to be the Westland Wapiti remains that i have , with my original P40E instrument panel a close second.

                        cheers dave
                        Founding member Not more bl@@dy burmese spitfires club


                          I've a Shack con-rod out of one of their Griffons, but more relevant is probably the 3 spitfires and one handley page hampden I have which were made during WWII for a wedding present. They are rumoured to be made out of either Whitley or Spitfire scrap, and were made at RAF Dyce, near Aberdeen. There was at one time also a Shorts Sunderland, but unfortunately I did not receive that.

                          The Spitfires and Hampden were given to me by an old family friend who unfortunately died some years back, and who lived around RAF Dyce all her life. Her husband had been in the RAF, but I am not sure if he was based there. I received them, as she did not want them to go the same way as the Sunderland, who she gave to her son in law, and was never seen again....

                          The models all appear to be crudely electroplated, and I have no way of telling what the metal is underneath. The Spits are without stands, and the Hampden has a crude shaped threaded bar stand which goes into a circular piece of wood.

                          Sizewise, the spits have a wingspan of about 20cm, and are about 15cm in length, the Hampden has a wingspan of about 35cm, and is about 30cm long. These are all guesses, as they are in storage at the moment until I can fabricate a new stand for them.

                          I will post photos later if anybody is interested, but I will be offshore for sometime starting tomorrow, so it will be mid to late Jan before this can happen.

                          "I've never killed a man, but I've read many obituaries with a great deal of satisfaction" - Mark Twain


                            I think for me it must be a photograph album. That my uncle took in 1938/39 of Fairey Battles and Hawker Hinds, plus a few other aircraft that where at RAF Harwell. My uncle was killed in 1942. So they mean a great deal to me, i never knew him.


                              One item with family history:
                              My late father's A-2 complete with hand typed (as opposed to printed) B-17 checklist.

                              My other favorite bits:
                              Piece of fabric from the 1903 Wright Flyer. Presentation paper signed by I. Wright-Miller, their grand-niece and widow of the executor of Orville's estate.
                              Kelly's Wright biography autographed by Orville (and a note written inside the cover from the original owner...a USAAF flight surgeon...on how and when it was autographed).
                              Autographed copy of One Man Air Force...a 1944 autobiography of Don Gentile.
                              Autographed copy of Jimmy Doolittle's biography, I could Never Be So Lucky Again..
                              Autographed "presentation edition" of The Spirit of St. Louis, by Charles Lindberg.
                              Neil Armstrong signed copy of the National Geographic magazine from late 1969 that featured photos from Apollo 11...and a record of radio traffic.
                              Autographed copy of Fate is the Hunter by Ernest K. Gann.
                              Other signed books by Eddie Rickenbaker, "Wrong Way" Corrigan, Igor Sikorsky, Charles Kaman, Frank Piasecki, Tex Hill, Chuck Yeager, Bud Anderson, Col. Zemke, Jim Lovell, John Glenn, Paul Tibbets and crew of the Enola Gay, and the great Roger Freeman.

                              A signed desk model of the F-117 by Skunk Works head Ben Rich.
                              Signed X-15 model by pilot Bill Dana.

                              Back in the 70's the Smithsonian produced posters of some it its aircraft with a 3" x3" piece of fabric taken off during restorations. A few years ago I picked up four: The Vin Fizz, the first plane to cross the U.S.; the NC-4, the first plane to fly the Atlantic(albeit in stages); The Douglas World Cruiser, first plane to go around the world; and a piece of Amelia Earhart's Lockheed Vega.
                              These are't too valuable because there are so many around...mine cost much more to frame than purchase.
                              Last edited by J Boyle; 5th December 2007, 00:56.
                              There are two sides to every story. The truth is usually somewhere between the two.


                                Mine would be my Grandads medals and logbooks, but they are items with more relevance to my I will put forward the best spade grip I have ever seen in my almost 30 years of collecting....a cracker off a Hurricane that I acquired a month or so ago!
                                Last edited by Rocketeer; 18th May 2008, 08:42.
                                Tony Dyer


                                  I have a groundcrew manual for the prototype Lightning XA847, the first British aircraft to exceed mach 2 in level flight.

                                  Second to that comes my Lightning stick tops.




                                  "Good luck Mr Gorsky!".



                                    Loose bound set of letters /documents found in a scrap yard, dated, headed letter communication from several notable test pilots / designers etc. sensibly arguing for the resurrection of TSR2 flight test programme, with the goverment of the time.
                                    Francis Pym's office replies, dismissing the very sound and comprehensively costed technical arguements for a re-starting of a test programme with the remaining airframes etc...priceless....


                                      I have a few pieces that are significent,My Air Ops Iraq G.S.M.(awarded for four months in the desert without alcohol).My passing out parade video at Swinderby because it has footage of my father before he died & a a model Spitfire made by my Great Uncle Charlie when he was as an apprentice at Rose Bros factory in Gainsborough.


                                        For me it is my Firefly fuselage & associated items.
                                        Also R.N.A.S St Merryn research material.
                                        Last edited by H.M.S Vulture; 20th January 2008, 23:51.
                                        WANTED FAIREY FIREFLY parts!