The Curtiss-Wright AT-9, The Other Jeep...

...from MMP Books

Title:  The Curtiss-Wright AT-9 The Other Jeep

Author: Dan Hagedorn

Publisher:  MMP

ISBN:  978-83-65958-30-3

I always enjoy reading a well researched and written book about an aircraft I have to admit to knowing nothing about beforehand. This new monograph from MMP and Dan Hagedorn is a fascinating read. The author has the fortune of being the Senior Curator at the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field in Seattle.

The AT-9 was a twin engine aircraft that was one of the significant training aircraft that allowed the huge number of new pilots in the USA in WW2 to transition from single to twin-engine aircraft. So well used that it gained the nickname 'Jeep' within the USAAF. Produced at the Curtis-Wright facility at St. Louis (though actually in Robertson, MO). 791 of these twin-engine trainers were made and following the story of their design and development we are provided with a detailed account of the many air bases and units where they were operated. It explains their operational stories at each one and gives details of unit markings where these are available. Amidst all this are accounts from veterans and their experience of flying the AT-9.

As well as a detailed history, we are provided with a fine selection of archive photos which illustrate the text all through the book, and with a selection of colour photos at the back of the book. There is a section devoted to AT-9 colours and markings, plus there are 5 pages of fine colour profiles. The final part of the story of the AT-9 is also included, and the post-war disposal of all those surviving airframes. From all of them, it seems that just one remains, and even that is a combination of two airframes to create the one complete exhibit.

Maybe not a well known subject, but built and operated in large numbers, a training aircraft that played a vital part in preparing the many pilots of the USAAF for flying the variety of twin engine combat aircraft that saw service throughout WW2.

Thanks to MMP Books, who kindly provided my review copy.