Eglin AFB in Okaloosa County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
Few aircraft are as well known or were so widely used for so long as the C-47 or “Gooney Bird” as it was nicknamed. The aircraft was adapted from the DC-3 commercial airliner which appeared in 1936. The first C-47s were ordered in 1940 and by the end of WWII, 9,348 had been procured for the USAAF. They carried personnel and cargo, towed troop carrying gliders and dropped paratroops into enemy territory. They participated in the Berlin Airlift, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
The development of the “Gooney Bird” as a gunship was largely due to a pilot's need to train his guns on a site and continue to circle the site for long periods of time, while continually hitting the target with reasonable accuracy. The flight testing of these “gun ships" was accomplished here at Eglin AFB, FL in 1964, using three 7.62mm SUU-11A Gatling mini-guns. On December 2, 1964, the first AC-47s arrived in Vietnam and were assigned to the 1st Air Commando Squadron.
The ground troops affectionately called the AC-47 "Puff – the Magic Dragon". It was noted that the Viet Cong never seeing such an attack from the sky, thought it to be a fire breathing dragon. "Spooky” became the call sign for the AC-47 and that name is the one that stuck with the AC-47.
This C-47K S/N 44-76486 is being
Manufacturer Douglas Aircraft Corp
Thrust Two Pratt & Whitney R-1830 Radial engines rated at 1,200 shaft horsepower each
Length 64 ft 5 in
Height 16 ft 11 in
Wingspan 95 ft
Weight 16,979 lbs Empty / 33,000 lbs Max
Speed 232 mph Max / 175 mph Cruise
Range 1,513 miles w/o refueling
Ceiling 25,000 ft
Armament Three — 7.62mm SUU-11A Gatling guns on AC-47 Model aircraft
This aircraft is on loan from the National Museum of the United States Air Force
Location. 30° 28.017′ N, 86° 33.694′ W. Marker is in Eglin AFB, Florida, in Okaloosa County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Pinchot Road (Road 189) and Museum Drive, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Located at the Air Force Armament Museum. Marker is at or near this postal address: 100 Museum Drive, Eglin AFB FL 32542, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. F-15 Eagle (a few steps from this marker); F-111 Aardvark AC-130 Spectre (within shouting distance of this marker); B-57 Canberra (within shouting distance of this marker); F-16 Fighting Falcon (within shouting distance of this marker); B-17 Flying Fortress (within shouting distance of this marker); A-10 Thunderbolt II (within shouting distance of this marker); Faithful Partner – Guardian of the Night (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Eglin AFB.
Also see . . .
1. Air Force Armament Museum. (Submitted on April 12, 2017, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
2. Douglas AC-47 Spooky on Wikipedia. (Submitted on April 12, 2017, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
Categories. • Military •
Credits. This page was last revised on February 13, 2018. This page originally submitted on April 12, 2017, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut. This page has been viewed 82 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on April 12, 2017, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.