Aviation: Fly With the U.S. Marines


Display Status:

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

Collection Item Summary:

Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection

Throughout their history, posters have been a significant means of mass communication, often with striking visual effect. Wendy Wick Reaves, the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery Curator of Prints and Drawings, comments that "sometimes a pictorial poster is a decorative masterpiece-something I can't walk by without a jolt of aesthetic pleasure. Another might strike me as extremely clever advertising … But collectively, these 'pictures of persuasion,' as we might call them, offer a wealth of art, history, design, and popular culture for us to understand. The poster is a familiar part of our world, and we intuitively understand its role as propaganda, promotion, announcement, or advertisement."

Reaves' observations are especially relevant for the impressive array of aviation posters in the National Air and Space Museum's 1300+ artifact collection. Quite possibly the largest publicly-held collection of its kind in the United States, the National Air and Space Museum's posters focus primarily on advertising for aviation-related products and activities. Among other areas, the collection includes 19th-century ballooning exhibition posters, early 20th-century airplane exhibition and meet posters, and twentieth-century airline advertisements.

The posters in the collection represent printing technologies that include original lithography, silkscreen, photolithography, and computer-generated imagery. The collection is significant both for its aesthetic value and because it is a unique representation of the cultural, commercial and military history of aviation. The collection represents an intense interest in flight, both public and private, during a significant period of its technological and social development.

Copyright Disclosure for Orphaned Works

Whenever possible, the museum provides factual information about copyright owners and related matters in its records and other texts related to the collections. For many of the images in this collection, some of which were created for or by corporate entities that no longer exist, the museum does not own any copyrights. Therefore, it generally does not grant or deny permission to copy, distribute or otherwise use material in this collection. If identified, permission and possible fees may be required from the copyright owner independently of the museum. It is the user's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when copying, distributing or otherwise using materials found in the museum's collections. Transmission or reproduction of protected materials beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Users must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use.

If you have any more information about an item you've seen in the Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection, or if you are a copyright owner and believe we have not properly attributed your work to you or have used it without permission, we want to hear from you. Please contact pisanod@si.edu with your contact information and a link to the relevant content.

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Collection Item Long Description:

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Restrictions & Rights

Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum


U.S. Marine Corps


Poster, Military Aviation


2-D - Unframed (H x W): 95.3 x 67.9cm (37 1/2 x 26 3/4 in.)

Country of Origin

United States of America



Physical Description

AVIATION FLY WITH THE U.S. MARINES. Multicolor illustrated print recruiting for the Marines. Reproduction of a painted image depicting an over life-size eagle in flight through a cloudy sky, with a smiling Marine seated on his back. Below them is a biplane in flight with Marines insignia and a white plane in the background with a red, white and blue tail. Full text: at top, "AVIATION" in blue serif lettering. At bottom, "FLY" in red and "WITH THE U.S. MARINES." in blue serif lettering. Artist signature reproduced at lower left in blue, "Howard Chandler Christy 1920." At bottom within the white border in blue serif type, "For Full Information Apply at 24 EAST 23RD STREET, NEW YORK CITY." In small blue type at bottom left, "RCTG. 94."


ART-Posters, Original Art Quality

Inventory Number


Related Topics