Kite Museum – Military applications

Another interesting part of my visit to the World Kite Museum in Long Beach, Washington on Monday was an area which explained how kites were used by the military, especially during World War II.

Ordinary shaped kites had the image of enemy aircraft painted on them and were then flown to help ground based troops practice firing their weapons at the “planes,” which would then appear at the small size of the real planes they’d be firing at.

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Aircraft flying over water were all equipped with a raft, a hand-cranked emergency radio and a box kite which would be assembled and flown to raise the radio antenna to call for help.  These saved the lives of countless men who were then rescued.

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This unusually shaped kite was flown, then “snagged” by an airplane to deliver mail, maps or orders to ships at sea or troops in the field.

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And this large kite would be flown high in the air and 2,000 foot lengths of piano wire would hang below it, literally tearing enemy aircraft which flew through it apart.

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