Cee’s Black and White Challenge – Numbers

Numbers: Famous or Infamous

April 15, 2015

These are aircraft tail or serial numbers—each aircraft holds a famous or infamous (depending on your point of view) place in history.

Boeing B-29 Superfortress Radio Code Dimples 82 was named the Enola Gay for pilot Colonel Paul Tibbets’ mother. It was the aircraft that dropped the first nuclear weapon on Hiroshima.

Number 82, the Enola Gay B-29

Number 82, the Enola Gay B-29

This is the prototype for the Boeing 707 airliner, first flown in 1954, that made jet passenger travel practical.

Prototype Boeing 707

Prototype Boeing 707

The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird was first flown in 1964 and still holds records for speed (2,200+ mph) and altitude (in excess of 85,000 feet). This aircraft flew reconnaissance missions out of Mindenhall, England. (The aircraft was designed and built by Lockheed’s Skunk Works, hence the skunk on the aircraft.)

Lockheed SR-71

Lockheed SR-71

This customized Boeing 707 became Special Air Mission (SAM) aircraft number 26000, otherwise knows as “Air Force One,” but only when the President of the United States is on board. This was the first presidential jet aircraft, and began service in 1962. It was the primary presidential aircraft for Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon (see “In the Lofty Steps of Presidents.”

SAM 26000 became "Air Force One" when Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, or Nixon were on board.

SAM 26000 became “Air Force One” when Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, or Nixon were on board.

Photographs © 2015 Jeff Richmond

Renaissance Musing’s submission in response to Cee’s Black and White Challenge: Numbers.

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7 Responses to Cee’s Black and White Challenge – Numbers

  1. Pingback: Renaissance Musings Table of Contents | Renaissance Musings

  2. gpcox says:

    I never really thought about the numbers before – an entirely new perspective on each individual aircraft, isn’t it!

  3. merlinjr01 says:

    Aviation is a numbers business from the ground up!! And you have to start (in the military) by getting the right airplane. We were always assigned “tail numbers.”

  4. Cee Neuner says:

    You have some great numbers. Airplanes and jets have some great numbers to show off. Thanks for playing.

  5. merlinjr01 says:

    One of the things I like about your challenges, as well as other, is the diversity of response–it just shows how we (people) respond to a concept that at any one point seems so basic and specific, yet elicits such a broad variety or responses.

  6. Pingback: Cee-Black-White-Close-Numbers | WoollyMuses

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