Kelly's Airplanes

Since I'm such a great Kelly admirer, I was determined to collect a few of them for the Museum of Flight in Seattle, where I am a long-time very active volunteer.  So far the count is up to seven - not too bad!  One, the Jetstar Prototype, was also Kelly's personal airplane for 25 years.  In January 2010 - we made it Official ! - establishing the Lockheed / Kelly Johnson Collection as a part of the Museum's Collection Plan.

I'm hoping for a Model 10 Electra some day, which would give us Kelly's first and last aircraft designs.  In any event, we probably have the best Kelly Johnson collection in existence, anywhere.

UPDATE:  In September 2013, the Model 10 Electra joined the Museum's Collection - See Here

Some of Kelly Johnson's Airplane Designs

Model 10A Electra

Hudson Bomber

P-38 Lightning


P-80 Shooting Star


F-104 Starfighter

C-130 Hercules
(See Note below.)

U-2 Dragon Lady


SR-71 Blackbird

As Kelly said in his autobiography.... "More Than My Share of It All"

It's easy - even for me - to get carried away with love for all things "Kelly."  Kelly Johnson worked on about 40-42 airplane designs during his long career, and it's easy to fall into the trap of calling some of those designs "Kelly's airplanes."  And so I earlier ascribed the following two airplanes to Kelly.

The P2V Neptune was kicked off at Lockheed subsidiary Vega as a private venture the day before Pearl Harbor, Dec. 6, 1941,  and was designed by R.A. Bailey and Lou Height

 In the case of the C-130, the paper released by the National Academy of Sciences lists Kelly as holding the Patent (  
D-172,969) for the C-130.  This is true - I have a copy of the Patent -  but in my "due diligence" research, I found Bill Statler and Gene Frost designed the Hercules - an airplane Kelly initially disliked intensely - especially it's lack of sleek looks - but eventually came to love.  Kelly's name is on the Patent however......

P2V Neptune

C-130 Hercules

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