B-17 Print Origins? & Interesting Story

By: Rick Kaufman
On: 06/28/2009
I have a lithograph of a 401stBG B-17 with a copyright date of 1979 indicating that it was commissioned by MPB Corporation.  I am attempting to find the source/origins of this print so I can obtain permission to put a copy of it on the 401st web site some day.

MPB Corporation is a manufacturer of precision aircraft bearings now owned by Timken.  I intend to contact them in to see if they may be able to shed any light on the origins of this print.  (IF ANYONE KNOWS ANYTHING ABOUT THIS, FEEL FREE TO POST!)

The story of how my father obtained this print is worth telling.  Dad served 28 years in the USAF and pursued a career selling real estate after he retired from the Air Force near Omaha, Nebraska.  He was approached by one of his office mates to see if he would be interested in an airplane picture that a tenant had left behind in a rental house.  His friend recalled that Dick had flown in WWII and thought he might be interested in the picture.  Surprisingly, the print is of a "silver" 401st BG B-17 with tail number 46508, and letter designation IW-A.  This picture that Dad was given happened to have markings of his Bomb Group (401st) AND Squadron (614th)!