Dover Air Force Base in Kent County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
— S/N 44-9030 —
The Museum's C-54 is the last remaining "M" model skymaster
The Douglas C-54 Skymaster was the military variation of the DC-4 commercial transport. This propeller-driven aircraft was flown by the U.S. Army Air Force in WWII and the U.S. Air Force in the Korean War.
Although its primary role was cargo transport, other variations of the C-54 flew air-sea rescue, scientific, military research, and missile tracking and recovery missions. A C-54 was also the first presidential transport aircraft. Known as "The Sacred Cow," the aircraft was used by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
During the Berlin Airlift, 1948-1949, C-54s delivered coal, food, and other supplies to the people of blockaded West Berlin. Specially modified C-54Es, designated C-54Ms, hauled thousands of tons of coal during the airlift. The museum's C-54M is the only survivor of the original 38 M-models.
In 1989 this aircraft was delivered to the museum. It's now painted in the WWII markings that it wore to the end of the Berlin Airlift.
Powerplant: Four 1,450-hp Pratt & Whitney R-2000-9 Twin Wasp radial piston engines
Maximum Speed: 275 mph
Range: 4,000 mi. with max payload
Service ceiling: 22,300 ft
Max Takeoff Weight: 73,000 lb
Crew: Pilot, co-pilot, flight engineer, and navigator
Payload: 28,000 lb of cargo, 50 troops in canvas bucket seats, or 44 passengers
Wing Span - 117 ft 5 in
Length - 93 ft 5 in
Height - 27 ft 5 in
[Captions, clockwise from top right:]
Above: The museum's C-54 is loaded with coal during the Berlin Airlift at Frankfurt Airport, Germany.
Designed in the late 1930s, the C-54 was an all-metal aircraft apart from its fabric-covered control surfaces.
The civilian version of the C-54 was the DC-4.
Only two aircraft used the R-2000 engine—the C-54 and much newer C-7 Caribou. Although it was a good performer, larger displacement engines with a higher power ratio surpassed its capabilities.
Location. 39° 7.11′ N, 75° 27.425′ W. Marker is in Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, in Kent County. Marker can be reached from Heritage Road 0.7 miles west of Bayside Drive (Delaware Route 9), on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1301 Heritage Road, Dover AFB DE 19902, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. C-131D (within shouting distance of this marker); C-7A (within shouting distance of this marker); F-101B (within shouting distance of this marker); C-133B (within shouting distance of this marker); A-26C (within shouting distance of this marker); C-141A (within shouting distance of this marker); F-106A (within shouting distance of this marker); P-51 Mustang (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dover Air Force Base.
Categories. • Air & Space • War, Korean • War, World II •
More. Search the internet for C-54M.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 13, 2019. This page originally submitted on November 12, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 51 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on November 12, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.