William E. G. Taylor Collection

Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

William E. G. Taylor (1905-1991) was an aviator for the United States Navy, the United States Marine Corps, the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Taylor enrolled at the Guggenheim College of Aeronautical Engineering at New York University, but left to join the Naval Reserves in 1925. He received his Naval pilot's license in 1927 and was assigned to Fighting Squadron Five, Scouting Fleet. He resigned in 1928 when his squadron was ordered to inactive status and he then joined the US Marine Corps Reserve, where he was an aviator from 1928-1933. In 1933, he was again ordered to inactive status. At this point Taylor left the Armed Services and became a pilot for United Airlines. In 1939, however, he joined the Fleet Air Arm, Royal Navy, where he was in combat operations aboard the HMS Furious and HMS Glorious. Taylor then joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and became the first Squadron leader for the Eagle Squadron (71 Squadron, RAF), January - June 1941. In June, Taylor left the Eagle Squadron and rejoined the United States Naval Reserve, 1941-1951 where he served on the following vessels: Lexington, Yorktown, Wasp, Enterprise, Saratoga, and Ranger. After the war, Taylor was, among other posts, the commanding officer of Project Afirm and the commanding officer for the Night Attack and Training Unit, Atlantic (NACTU). In 1951 Taylor resigned from the Navy Reserves and worked first for Braniff Airlines in Panama, and then as a Vice President for Scandinavian Airlines System.