The first Air Force One

Sacred_Cow_airplane

With the President of the USA travelling at the moment there is a lot of mention of Air Force One.

That made me wonder who used the 1st Air Force One, turns out it was Franklin D.Roosevelt. Although technically it had a different name, the first plane designated Air Force One had the nickname “Sacred Cow”

 

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The Douglas VC-54C “Sacred Cow,” became the first official presidential airplane in 1944. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first president to use the “Sacred Cow” in 1945 just before he died. The plane features an elevator that would lift FDR in his wheelchair aboard the plane.

Douglas_VC-54C_Sacred_Cow_at_USAF_Museum.jpg

When President Franklin D. Roosevelt flew to the Casablanca Conference in 1943 on board a commercial Boeing 314 Clipper Ship, he became the first U.S. president to fly while in office. Concerned about relying upon commercial airlines to transport the president, the USAAF leaders ordered the conversion of a military aircraft to accommodate the special needs of the Commander in Chief.

After encountering difficulties with converting a C-87A transport, the USAAF arranged with Douglas Aircraft to construct a new transport aircraft specifically for presidential use. Nicknamed the Sacred Cow, this VC-54C became the first military aircraft to transport a U.S. president when President Roosevelt took it to the USSR for the Yalta Conference in February 1945.

franklin-d-roosevelt--the-yalta-conference

No president of the United States had sported an official airplane before Franklin Delano Roosevelt. And in 1943, there was considerable debate as to whether the chief executive of the United States should fly. However, Roosevelt had a flair for the dramatic. He was the first US president to visit the continent of Africa and the first president since Abraham Lincoln to visit a battle theater in time of war. None before him had ever left the US in time of war.

C-54C-Sacred-Cow-e1423524672339-850x396

To be honest I think it looks a lot cooler than the current one.

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