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World War II Glider and Military Museum 302 Kent Street Open June 3 Through Labor Day Iron Mountain, MI 49801 Hours: 9 am - 5 pm Monday - Saturday Seasonal Phone:  (906) 774-1086             Noon - 4 pm Sunday    Admission Rates: Click here During World War II, the Ford Motor Company's plant in Kingsford built more Model CG-4A gliders for the United States Army than any other company in the nation at much less cost than other manufacturers.  The glider featured in this museum is one of only seven fully restored CG-4A World War II gliders in the world.  Exciting World War II footage of gliders in action and personal stories of glider riders and pilots help tell the story. The "Heiserman," a small aircraft constructed by a local pilot, and a ¾-sized Piper Cub replica of the model used extensively during World War II round out the aircraft display. The military museum also contains an extensive collection of military uniforms from the Civil War through the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.   Other memorabilia includes displays of World War II photographs, Nazi Germany artifacts, a restored World War II vintage Jeep, a 1930's Model AA Ford dump truck and a Model A Ford Tudor sedan. A wall of Military and General Plaques honoring those who served, along with the names of donors and individuals whose time and talents let to the establishment of this museum, is displayed. The restoration of the CG-4A glider - and the idea for a glider museum - began when a deteriorated fuselage frame was donated to the Menominee Range Historical Foundation.  The glider frame was originally purchased by Olaf and Beatrice Blomquist, of Iron Mountain, for $75 sometime following World War II from the Ford Motor Company Plant in Kingsford.  The Blomquists, in turn, sold it to their nephew, Vernon (Janie) Anderson, of Metropolitan, located in northeastern Dickinson County, where it was used as a play house and hunting camp.  The prized artifact was donated to the Foundation by the Andersons in 2005.  Interest generated enough funds to make the restoration possible with enough money to also build a suitable museum to house the aircraft.  The World War II Glider and Military Museum opened in July, 2011. WACO CG-4A GLIDER INFORMATION A glider is a winged aircraft with no motor and no propellers.  It must be towed by larger, powered aircraft, then released in flight and piloted to the target landing zone. During 1942-1945, the Ford Motor Company's Kingsford plant built 4,190 Model CG-4A gliders for use in combat operations during World War II.  The Kingsford plant built more CG-4A gliders than any other company in the nation at much less cost than other manufacturers.  The primary builders of the Model CG-4A gliders were located in Troy, Ohio; Greenville, Michigan; Astoria, New York; Kansas City, Missouri; St. Paul, Minnesota; and Kingsford, Michigan. The photograph at the left shows a CG-4A Glider on exhibit at the Ford Motor Company Plant in Kingsford for the Army-Navy "E" Award which was presented on June 24, 1944. The primary builders of the Model CG-4A gliders were located in Troy, Ohio; Greenville, Michigan; Astoria, New York; Kansas City, Missouri; St. Paul, Minnesota; and Kingsford, Michigan. The CG-4A gliders were used for transporting.  The primary reasons for using gliders were because the glider was a silent aircraft and could deliver either troops or equipment behind enemy lines undetected at night.  Unlike powered aircraft, a glider could land where there was no airstrip. Once landed and disembarked, troops began specific assignments, such as seizing enemy installations, disrupting enemy communications, reconnaissance work or providing relief and support for friendly troops. Gliders were used by Canada and Great Britain, as well as the United States.  American glider troops were a part of the 101st Airborne and the 82nd Airborne of the U.S. Army. The CG-4A glider was a high-wing cabin aircraft having a steel-tube fuselage covered with fabric.  The wingspan was 83 feet, 4 inches, the length was 48 feet, 4 inches and the height was 12 feet, 7 inches.  Its wings were made of wood with plywood and fabric covering.  The glider had fixed-type landing gear, nose skids and hydraulic brakes. The CG-4A glider's designed weight was 7,500 pounds.  The maximum designed speed on tow or in free flight was 150 m.p.h.  With the designed load, room required for a normal 3-point landing was 600 to 800 feet.  Normal glide speed was approximately 75 to 85 m.p.h., and the normal rate of descent was approximately 400 feet per minute. The CG-4A glider could carry 13 soldiers plus the pilot and co-pilot, making a total of 15 personnel.  Instead of troops, the glider could transport military supplies or equipment, such as a ¼-ton jeep, or a 37mm AT gun, or a 75mm Howitzer, or a photographic lab, or a weather station, or radar equipment, or a field kitchen, or a repair shop, or radio equipment, or six litters for evacuation of wounded personnel.  A pilot and co-pilot operated the towline, trim tabs, spoiler, rudder, toe brake, lights, deceleration parachute and communication system.  Instruments on the glider included an airspeed indicator, rate-of-climb indicator, bank & turn indicator, altimeter and compass.  The entire nose of the CG-4A glider could be raised, facilitating loading and unloading.  There were also doors on both sides of the fuselage. ALLIED GLIDER OPERATIONS DURING WORLD WAR II British mission to Norway - November, 1942 - many casualties; failed mission Invasion of Sicily, July, 1943 China-Burma-India Operations - February, 1944 Invasion of Normandy (D-Day) - June, 1944 Invasion of Southern France - August, 1944 Holland Operation - September, 1944 Bastogne - December, 1944 Rhine River - March, 1945 Luzon, Philippines - June, 1945
CG-4A Glider on Exhibit at the Ford Motor Company Plant in Kingsford for the Army-Navy “E” Award, Presented on June 24, 1944 Glider - Waco CG-4A glider being towed Cockpit of Glider Which Opened to Allow for Quick Unloading of Men and Equipment Interior of Glider Showing Cockpit and Benches Restored World War II Army Jeep Interior of Glider Museum Showing Glider, Heiserman Airplane, Piper Cub Airplane, a Restored 1930 Model AA 1 ½ Ton Ford Dump Truck and 1930 Model A Tudor Sedan and Military Uniform Cases Along Wall World War II Glider/Military Glider Production in Kingsford’s Ford Motor Company Plant during World War II