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Past Issues

Volume 10, Number 2 - 2nd Quarter 2010

LOGBOOK is a quarterly magazine covering the entire spectrum of international aviation history, from the first tentative attempts at flight, to history that was made just yesterday.

LOGBOOK is a distinctive publication in the field of aviation history. At LOGBOOK we certainly enjoy bringing you in-depth articles written by some of the world’s premier aviation historians. More importantly, however, we also enjoy working with, actively encouraging and publishing the first-time, one-time and fledgling author. These are the folks who actually lived the aviation history they are writing about, which lets the reader experience the action from a unique perspective. This allows LOGBOOK to bring you aviation history you will find no other place.

Back Issue: Available
 

The Rotor Wing World

A Sikorsky HRS-2 - BuNo 129042 - assigned to HMR-163 sling loads supplies during the Korean War. A Sikorsky HRS-2 - BuNo 129042 - assigned to HMR-163 sling loads supplies during the Korean War.
Just after 0800 on a May morning at Quantico, Virginia, 36 years ago a small group of Marine aviators – including the author – strode out on the Turner Field flight line to get their first look at a new kind of Marine aircraft, the helicopter. Our interest was more than merely academic, since we had all reported the day before for duty with Marine Helicopter Squadron ONE (HMX-1) to receive instruction leading to qualification as helicopter pilots.
In the days and weeks to follow, we were to revise upward our first impressions of the helicopter, both as to its ruggedness and its capabilities. But if an HMX-1 instructor had at that moment pointed to the nearest Piasecki “Flying Banana” and called it the forerunner of Marine amphibious assault transport to come, most of us would have shaken our heads in polite skepticism.
By retired Marine Corps aviator Theodore K. Thomas.
 

Bombs Over Arizona

A Mexican Air Force Officer demonstrates manual release bombing - circa 1920. A Mexican Air Force Officer demonstrates manual release bombing - circa 1920.
A one-legged barnstormer banks his monoplane as the Mexican bombardier, courage fortified with tequila, applies his cigar to a fuse and tosses a suitcase of dynamite in the general direction of the Federales entrenched at the border. Explosions, destruction, and injuries on the U.S. side create an international crisis. President Hoover calls in the U.S. Army Air Corps (USAAC). The year is 1929, and we are in Naco, Arizona. Though it is easy to portray the affair as comedy, the battles at Naco were part of a deadly serious little war. It claimed some two thousand lives and swept the struggling Mexican Republic to the edge of financial disaster.
Author Robert D. Temple tells the story of the first bombs to fall on United States soil - 12 years before Pearl Harbor.
 

Project Muddy Hill

The only P-2 Neptune modified for Project Muddy Hill.  Illustration by J. S. Cultice The only P-2 Neptune modified for Project Muddy Hill. Illustration by J. S. Cultice
In November 1965, the Central Intelligence Agency Offices of Research and Development and Special Affairs, with the assistance from the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (OPNAV), specifically the Office of Reconnaissance, Electronic Warfare, Special Operations, Navy (REWSON), cooperated on proposing and then initiating Project Muddy Hill. Using a single Lockheed P-2H Neptune patrol aircraft modified with state-of-the-art electro-optical (EO) and other special sensors, Project Muddy Hill would provide an airborne hunter/locator vehicle for usage in nighttime detection and interdiction scenarios in Southeast Asia combat environments. Specific mission scenarios to be targeted were the Ho Chi Minh trail system in Laos as well as undefended areas where conventional photography in dense foliage had heretofore proven non-effective.
Retired Naval Officer Robert Zafran, a crewmember on the Project Muddy Hill Neptune, tell the developmental and operational history of this once highly classified mission.