FAIRCHILD FC-2 W2 – NC3569
Herb Harcom’s FC-2 is the oldest of all the Fairchild aircraft, though this FC-2 had many owners before it fell into Herb’s hands. The Fairchild was manufactured at Farmingdale, Long Island, New York in November 1927 and was sold to Curtiss Flying Service in Chicago, Illinois. It was then sold to Interstate Airlines which later was absorbed into American Airways. The FC-2 flew the Chicago-Atlanta route during 1928 and 1929 as a passenger airplane for American Airways.
The Fairchild had a welded steel-tube structure fuselage and wooden wings. The engine was a 220 hp Wright “Whirlwind” air-cooled radial engine. The passenger cabin had accommodation for five with the pilot in the front and four passengers, seated in pairs, behind. The cabin had about 90 cubic feet of space available for freight when no passengers were carried and an additional 35 cubic feet were available for passenger luggage or more freight.
The FC-2 was finally retired from airline service because of the acquisition of larger and faster equipment by American Airways and passed through three more owners before it was sold to Herb in 1961.
The owner who sold the FC-2 to Herb had stored the airplane in a shed in Dunweg, Missouri since 1939. Needless to say, the Fairchild was in pretty sorry shape when it was sold, so Herb spent two years restoring his new treasure. The FC-2 flew for the first time as a completely restored antique on August 23, 1963. Herb took the Fairchild to numerous fly-ins and air shows throughout the Midwest where he won a total of 30 trophies.
In the fall of 1967, Herb decided to donate his Fairchild to EAA. He wanted it to be preserved for future generations as an example of the early day transports which helped to build our present network of airways. Historically, the FC-2 is the oldest Fairchild in existence and, at the time, was one of just two of that type known.
After a little weather and engine trouble, the Fairchild made its final flight. On July 17, 1969, Herb piloted his FC-2 from Tulsa, Oklahoma to Hales Corners, Wisconsin, stopping in Hannibal, Missouri and Rockford, Illinois along the way. The Fairchild was put on display in the Air Museum and in 1972 was visited by more than 50,000 visitors.
Fairchild FC-2 W2 Fairchild FC-2 W2