The last known remaining Fairchild PT-19A used for primary flight training by the Tuskegee Airmen in 1944 is currently under restoration to flight by the Collings Foundation.
The Tuskegee Airmen were America’s first group of African-American military airmen, serving in the 332nd Fighter Group and 447th Bomber Group of the U.S. Army Air Force during WWII. These young men included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors, and all the personnel who kept the planes in the air. They were named after the location where they trained, Tuskegee Airfield near Tuskegee, Alabama.
The Tuskegee Airmen were subjected to racial discrimination, both within and outside the Army. They were denied military leadership roles and skilled training because many believed they lacked qualifications for combat duty. Before 1940, African-Americans were barred from flying for the U.S. military. Civil rights organizations and the press exerted pressure that resulted in the formation of the all African-American pursuit squadron. The Tuskegee Airmen overcame segregation and prejudice and became one of the most highly respected fighter groups of World War II.
The Collings Foundation acquired the last known remaining Fairchild PT-19A used to train Tuskegee pilots (Serial number 9504AE, 43-31512) and it is currently under restoration to flying condition. It appears, from the records, that this aircraft was manufactured by Aeronca, Middletown OH and delivered to the USAAF on February 6th, 1944. It was assigned to the Primary Pilot Training School, Tuskegee AAF in Alabama on February 12th, 1944. The restoration project is a 100-point, full restoration that will bring this historic aircraft back to factory-fresh condition. The restoration is being completed by Century Aviation of Wenatchee, WA who also completed our 1909 Curtiss Pusher and is also currently restoring our 1914 Curtiss Model F Flying Boat.
Restoring such an important aircraft is a time-consuming and expensive process. We can only accomplish this through your support and donations – so please help us get the PT-19A flying and “Keep ‘em Flying” for the education of our future generations by generously giving to our Tuskegee Airmen PT-19A Restoration Project Fund.