1956 - 2021, Celebrating  over 65 Years of Service

B-17 Flying Fortress The Symbol of Second World War Air Power
by Frederick A. Johnsen
Publisher: Aviation Week book published by McGraw-Hill

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Web Site:
Binding:  Hardbound Height:




Pages:  159 No. Photos:
 166 B&W, 16 Color

The design and construction of the Boeing Model 299, the first Flying Fortress during the Great Depression of the 1930s was an excellent example of guts and foresight by Boeing. The concept of a four-engine strategic bomber in 1935 was very controversial but very fortunate for the U.S. and her allies when World War II broke out in 1939.

The seven chapters of this book cover Boeings colossal gamble on the Model 299, the advanced engineering investment Boeing made on the Model 200 Monomail, the YB-9 twin-engine bomber, the revolutionary Model 247 commercial transport and the giant XB-15 experimental bomber. The design of the B-17 was influenced by all of these aircraft. The design evolution of the B-17 is given in Chapter 2, Chapter 3 is titled Bombs Away! The Flying Fortress Goes to War, Chapter 4, The Human Element: People Animated the B-17 covers the crew members, Chapter 5, By Example, Arming the Flying Fortress is about the gunners and gun turrets and evolution of armament as WWII progressed, Other Lands: Foreign Countries Also Flew the Fortress is the title of Chapter 6 and Chapter 7, After Victory: B-17s in Postwar Use covers the use of the B-17 as a fire-fighting aerial tanker, information gathering duties at the Bikini atoll atom bomb tests, their use by Israel during their War of Independence and a roster of the fire fighting B-17s.

This is a fine book and history of one of the great aircraft of WWII

Al Hansen


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