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Carolinas Aviation Museum
Established 1992
Location Charlotte/Douglas International Airport, Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
Type Aviation museum
Director Randall Breedlove, Executive Director
Medal of Honor Mike Clausen's CH-46D

Founded in 1992 by Floyd & Lois Wilson, the Carolinas Aviation Museum displays a collection of over 50 static aircraft, and a wealth of smaller historic items related to aviation in the North & South Carolina. The museum is located on the grounds of Charlotte/Douglas International Airportat 4108 Minuteman Way, Charlotte NC 28208.



The Museum comprises three major facilities which contain over 50 aircraft and a large number of artifacts. The Museum also operates a number of flying aircraft, and with access to four runways, one of 11,000 feet, historic aircraft, such as B-17s, B-24s, the B-29 and the Berlin Airlift C-54 fly in and visit the museum from time to time.

Most of the collection is comprised of military aircraft, including a lot of jets from the 1950s & 1960s. Several aircraft came from the closed Florence Air & Missile Museum, Florence, South Carolina. A significant number of aircraft have also come from MCAS Cherry Point and MCAS New River.

The Museum has plans to begin construction of a major new hangar complex in the near future.


Aircraft engines in storage at the Bat Cave. Dec 2009.

The Museum operates three facilities, all located at the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport:

  • Main Museum (4108 Minuteman Way): This facility is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday, and contains a wide array of aircraft and artifacts as well as the closest vantage point on the airfield for visitors to view aircraft operations. Tues. - Sat 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday 1 pm to 5 pm. Admission. (p) 704-359-8442
  • Dolph Overton Aviation Library (Morris Field Drive): This research library contains over 9,000 volumes, and is staffed by 8 volunteers on Tuesday & Thursdays. This is the largest dedicated historical aviation research archive in North and South Carolina and is named in honor of Major Dolphin D. Overton, III, USAF, a Korean War ace from North Carolina. Charles Wagner is the Chief Librarian. (p) 704-938-2408
  • Bat Cave Storage & Restoration Facility (Yorkmont Drive): This is a 50,000 sq ft storage and restoration facility located in the air cargo section of the Airport near the US Airways hangers. This facility is not open to the public.

Special Collections

  • Major Dolph D. Overton III USAF Photographic Collection
  • Piedmont Airlines Historical Society
  • Preddy Memorial Foundation (WWII Preddy Brothers artifacts)
  • US Airways Heritage Collection

Flying Aircraft

Piedmont DC-3 at 2007 Andrews AFB Airshow

The Museum also operates a small group of flying historic aircraft. These include a DC-3 in airline configuration in the representative markings of Piedmont Airlines', and two Grumman OV-1D Mohawks.

  • Piedmont Airlines DC-3 - N44V -This aircraft was acquired by Piedmont Airlines several years after the Airline stopped flying DC-3s and restored to an original airline configuration. Thereafter the aircraft was based in Winston-Salem, NC (KINT) and the Airline operated the airplane as a goodwill flagship taking it to numerous airshows each year. In 1998 US Air, which had acquired Piedmont Airlines, put the aircraft up for sale, and the Museum launched a fund raising campain to acquire the aircraft. When the aircraft was acquired by the Museum it was moved to Charlotte and has been housed in the Airport's original hangar which was built by the WPA. For the last several years the aircraft has been supported by US Airways and sports the US Airways heritage logo next to the passanger door.
  • US Army Grumman OV-1D Mohawks -The Museum operates two Mohawks which were acquired in 1996 from the final operational US Army squadron of Mohawks which were based at Hunter Army Airfield in GA. These aircraft are veterans of Vietnam and Desert Storm.

Aircraft Collection

Bellanca 1940 14-9L Crusair Serial # 1037 / N1KQ (State Airlines)

The Aircraft Collection includes:

  • Douglas Aircraft Company 1944 DC-3 N44V (Piedmont Airlines markings) - Flyable - Former C-47
  • Bellanca 1940 14-9L Crusair Serial # 1037 / N1KQ (State Airlines) - Hanging in the D Concourse at the Airport (KCLT)
  • Ercoupe 1946 415-C Serial # 3805 / N3180H - Could be Flyable
  • Piper Cub (In storage)
  • Long/Schweizer 1948 Midget Mustang Serial # 100001 - Goodyear Air Racer - Could be Flyable
  • Wright brothers 1902 Wright Glider (Reproduction) - On Display at Charlotte-Douglas Airport
  • Boeing 1953 KC-97 Stratotanker Serial # 53-0335 - Texas Air National Guard (Cockpit Only)
  • Boeing 1941 PT-17/ N2S Kaydet Serial 15923 / N48272 United States Navy
  • Boeing CH-46D Sea Knight Serial # 153389 USMC - Medal of Honor Winner Vietnam War
  • Cessna 1952 L-19 Bird Dog Serial 0-20777 / N777VN United States Army - Flyable
  • Convair 1956 YF-102 Delta Dagger Ser 31788 USAF 2nd of 10 YF prototypes produced - SC Air Guard
  • Douglas 1944 A-26C Invader Serial 44-35752 Donated by Vern Reyburn as "Rude Invader" (Storage)
  • Douglas 1947 D-558-1 Skystreak Serial # 37972 This was Aircraft # 3, last flown by Scott Crossfield
  • Douglas 1956 A4D-1 Skyhawk Serial # 14-2226 US Marines 156th of 2960 built
  • Douglas 1944 C-47 Dakota Serial # 12907/ 43-49926 - Royal Canadian Air Force - Burma Veteran
  • Grumman 1962 OV-1D Mohawk Serial # 62-5890 / N1209P United States Army - Vietnam Veteran - Flyable
  • Grumman 1962 OV-1D Mohawk Serial # 62-5874 / N1171Y United States Army - Flyable - Vietnam, Korea, Honduras
  • Grumman F-14D Super Tomcat BuNo: 161166 VF-213 - The Last F-14 Squadron to see combat
  • Kaman 1953 HOK-1 Serial #139990
  • McDonnell Douglas 1982 AV-8B-1 Harrier Serial # 161397 United States Marines, #3 US Built Harrier / #2 Flight test aircraft -5000+ hrs of test flight time.
  • McDonnell Douglas 1985 F-4S Phantom II Serial # 155872 USMC VMFA-235 Barbers Point / MCAS Cherry Point
  • McDonnell Douglas 1985 F-4S Phantom II Serial # 158353 USMC VMFA-235 Barbers Point / (Cockpit Only)
  • McDonnell Douglas 1957 F-101B Voodoo Serial # 56-0243 Flew with Nevada Air National Guard
  • North American 1944 SNJ-5C Serial # 90906 MCAS El Torro Air Group 31 / Last Service 1958 - Flyable
  • North American 1950 T-28B Trojan Serial # 138258 United States Army
  • North American 1962 T-2A Buckeye Serial # 148239 United States Navy - Last Single Engine Airframe built
  • North American 1952 F-86L Sabre Jet Serial # 52-4159 - United States Air Force - (In Storage)
  • North American F-100D "Super Saber" Serial #?? - United States Air Force (In Storage)
  • LTV 1956 A-7E2 Corsair II Serial # 159971 VA-72 Desert Storm USS John F Kennedy
  • Lockheed 1944 TV-1/P-80 Shooting Star Serial # 33866 United States Marines
  • Lockheed 194? TV-2/T-33 Shooting Star Ser ?? United States Navy - (In Storage)
  • Lockheed 194? TV-2/T-33 Shooting Star Ser ?? United States Navy - (#2 In Storage)
  • Republic P-47D-1RA 42-22331 - Wreckage from WWII Training Mission Crash - Ocean Isle, NC (In Storage)
  • Republic F-84G-30RE Thunderjet Serial #53-3253 United States Air Force Korean War Jet Fighter
  • Waco Aircraft Company 1941 CG-15 Waco Combat Glider - United States Army Air Forces - In Storage recovered from South Carolina

US Airways Heritage Collection

The Museum has possibly the largest collection of artifacts and memorabilia from the various legacy airlines which have merged over the years to form the current US Airways. The largest and most visible is the Piedmont Airlines DC-3, which still flies to air shows and sports the US Airways heritage logo just like Mainline US Airways jets next to the passenger door.

The collection includes artifacts from:

Artifacts include, but are not limited to: dishes, uniforms, manuals, airport signs, old baggage carts, an early de-icing truck, airline models, and a significant amount of documents.

Many of the volunteers at the Museum are active and former US Airways employees, including the pilots of the DC-3.


See also

Coordinates: 35°13′30″N 80°56′01″W / 35.22503°N 80.93374°W / 35.22503; -80.93374



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