Art of the Airport tower
OPEN december 19, 2016-march 10, 2017Composed of 50 photographs by Smithsonian photographer Carolyn Russo, Art of the Airport Tower
explores the varied forms and functions of airport traffic control towers in the U.S. and around the world. Russo traveled to 85 airports in 23 countries to capture images of these towers. What started out as a strictly functional structure, the airport tower has become a symbol of its airport, its community and even its country. The exhibition is sponsored by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, Air Traffic Control Association, Harris Corp., Rockwell Collins, Saab and Thales. Epson America Inc. and Manfrotto provided in-kind support.
tHE PLANE OF TOMORROW, tODAY!
Within months of the end of WWII, the Engineering and Research Corporation (ERCO) began marketing it's spin-proof, stall-resistant, anyone-can-fly Ercoupe. The airplane was the work of the brilliant designer, Fred Weick, and was marketed as the epitome of a new era of modern living. This exhibit draws on the museum's vast ERCO collection to illuminate the design, marketing and worldwide success of the Ercoupe. It features an Ercoupe suspended in flight and a cutaway section, so visitors can see what makes this plane unique.
Over here & Over there: Aviation and prince George's County During World War I
When the United States declared war on Germany in April 1917, powered flight was barely a decade old. Explore how we developed from fragile aircraft able to fly only a few hundred feet to the fighting machines of World War I. Discover the many ways the first military pilots, trained at College Park, influenced aviation during and after the War. Learn about the role of Prince George's County and its residents during the war.
Another field of firsts: African American Aviators of Prince George's County
College Park is not the only "Field of Firsts" in Prince George's County. In 1941, John W. Greene and Dr. C. M. Gill became the first African-Americans to operate a licensed airport in Maryland. The Columbia Air Center operated from 1941-1956, on land that is now part of Patuxent River Park. Learn about the evolution of the airport as a haven for African-Americans interested in flying to hosting the first black Civil Air Patrol squadron in the region.