The Boeing P-26 “Peashooter” was the first all-metal production fighter aircraft and was also the first “pursuit” monoplane used by the U.S. Army Air Corps. To add to the list of “firsts”, it was also the debut of flaps to reduce landing speeds. Sadly, it was the last fighter built by Boeing.
The prototype first flew in 1932, and the type was still in use in the Philippines as late as 1941. The unusual high-back canopy, which was armored, was added due to the planes unfortunate tendency to flip over after a bad landing due to the short nose.
Despite the small production, the type actually served until 1956 with the Guatemalan Air Force. the Military Aviation Museum’s replica P-26 was built completed in 2006 and is painted to represent the 1st Pursuit Group, 94th Pursuit Squadron circa 1935-36.
Presently located at the Military Aviation Museum, Virginia Beach, VA.
January 20th, 2019
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