A Tribute to the Great Airplanes of World War II, the Cold War and Modern Times
This website is a tribute to the great military planes and commercial airplanes of the past, and to the people who designed, built, flew, and serviced these aircraft.
We provide first-hand commentary, specifications, history and original photographs of great World War II planes such as the B-24 Liberator and the B-17 Flying Fortress, and modern-era military aircraft such as the SR-71 Blackbird as well.
The 70th Anniversary of the End of the War with Japan
August of 2015 marked the 70th anniversary of the end of the war with Japan begun by the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.
"Enola Gay" parked on tarmac after Hiroshima atomic bomb flight
Read about the B-29's role in World War II, the bomber's development, production and deployment.
Explore our coverage of the B-29 Superfortress "Enola Gay" and its role in dropping the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945. Days later, the B-29 "Bockscar" dropped the second bomb, on Nagasaki.
On August 14, 1945, the Japanese accepted Allied terms for surrender. The War against the United States, begun by an unprovoked attack by Japan, was ended by the United States.
B-29 Superfortress "Enola Gay" at the Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C. (staff photo)
Continued Evolution of This Website Series
We originally launched www.PlanesOfThePast.com in 2012. Since then, it has grown into a large site covering a variety of aviation-related topics. In 2015, we split the website into more-focused topics based on our viewers' interests. Now we offer the following websites:
- AirplanesOfthePast.com - World War II, the Cold War and modern day airplanes (this site)
- B29-Superfortress.com - Design, development, specifications, and photographs of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress
- AirplaneBoneyards.com - Military and airliner boneyards in the United States
- AirlinerSpotter.com - Jet airliner spotting tips, Airbus and Boeing fleets with characteristics, comparisons and photographs
- AirplaneNoseArt.com - Nose art on aircraft, its origin, usage in World War II, and the modern day art form
- AirplaneExhibits.com - Airplane exhibits, museums, memorials and air parks
From the Enola Gay to the Boeing 747, from the B-25 Mitchell to the F-4 Phantom, and the great warbirds and civil aviation airliners in between ... we remember.
Enjoy your flight back to the past!
New Features: Airplane Nose Art, Buzz Numbers, Naval Aviation and More!
We're adding new features to the website in 2016, including additional stories, reviews and original photographs. Some recent additions:
- Military airplane nose Art in World War II
- U.S. Air Force Buzz Numbers
- USAF Tail Codes
- U.S. Naval and Marine Corp Aviation
- U.S. Presidential Aircraft and Air Force One
- World War II Bomber Production Numbers
- Database of Historic Airplane Photographs, Serial Numbers, Locations
- Vintage aviation images: DCA | MIA | TPA | TUS | PHX | LAX | LOV | SFO | SEA
- Website Highlights Video on YouTube