Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

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    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

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    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image are the engine and propellers of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the propeller of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the landing gear of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the landing gear of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Painted on the engine of the Wittman Special 20 are the words “buster by S.J. Wittman Oshkosh, WIS.”

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the wings of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Painted on a wing of the Wittman Special 20 is the number twenty.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the Fuselage of the Wittman Special 20.

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    CCO - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

    This media is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

    IIIF provides researchers rich metadata and image viewing options for comparison of works across cultural heritage collections. More - https://iiif.si.edu

    View Manifest

    View in Mirador Viewer

    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls. Highlighted in this image is the rudder and vertical stabilizer of the Wittman Special 20.

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    Wittman "Chief Oshkosh"/"Buster"

    The Wittman "Chief Oshkosh"/"Buster" on display in the Golden Age of Flight gallery at the National Mall building.
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    Wittman Chief Oshkosh/Buster - Tail

    The tiny, barn-red, homemade airplane first named Chief Oshkosh and later Buster was built by Steve Wittman, who began entering it in midget category races in 1931. Over more than two decades, it enjoyed perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history. In its final race, in 1954, it placed third—not bad for a 23-year-old airplane.

    From the exhibition In Plane View

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    Wittman Special 20 "Buster"

    The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most successful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls
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The aircraft that enjoyed what was perhaps the longest and most sucessful career in air racing history was Steve Wittman's Chief Oshkosh, known in the post-World War II era as Buster. From 1931 until its retirement in 1954, this midget racer set records and took numerous trophies in class races and free-for-alls.

Although Wittman was plagued with several problems in this, his first homebuilt racer, he placed high each year in major races in Los Angeles, Cleveland, Miami, and Chicago. In 1937, Chief Oshkosh set a new world's record for its class over a 100-kilometer course at Detroit with a speed of 383.30 kilometers per hour (238.22 miles per hour).