W Nr 111711
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This plane was never at Freeman Field
This Me 262 was never at Freeman Field, Seymour, Indiana. It was delivered to Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio, tested and crashed there. Since there is so much good and detailed information and photos of this plane, it was decided to present it on this web site regardless.
|surrendered at Frankfurt/Rhein-Main by defecting Messerschmitt test pilot Hans Fay, on 30 March 1945.|
|examined on site by USAAF Air Intelligence organization and then shipped onwards from Rouen, France to the USA by a fast merchant ship, the Manawska Victory.|
|test flown by Russ Schleeh on 29 August 1945, wearing its German Werk number 111711, and was generally referred to as '711' or 'T2-711|
|crashed 20 August 1946 at Xenia, Ohio|
English translation below.
Important is this: The article was published on 22 January 1979. You will find a lot of information, other authors didn't have at that time. But since this date much time passed. And other authors found new information. Result: The article is not current. The article was published by the HALLER TAGBLATT, the local newspaper of Schwäbisch Hall in 1979. Please note this.
Until 1 June 2007 I have been journalist for 38 years in Schwäbisch Hall. But my special topic are the local history between 1933 and 1945 and here the history of the Schwaebisch Hall airfield between 1934 and 1993 (the German and the American time) with the German jet plane units at this airfield (3), the Messerschmitt final assembly of the Me 262, Hans Fay's flight to the US Forces, the Me 262 111711, the US air raids against the airfield and the concentration camp Hessental. Hessental is a part of Schwaebisch Hall and the location of the airfield.
In 1975 I have published the first history of the concentration camp and after this booklets about the beginning of Nazism in Schwäbisch Hall and the pogrom of 1938 in this city. In 1986 and 1989 was following the book "Rüstung, Krioeg und Sklaverei. Der Fliegerhorst Schwäbisch Hall-Hessental und das Konzentrationslager" - the first complete history of the airfield and Messerschmitt in Schwäbisch Hall (first edition, 1989 second edition). The US Forces at the airfield had the request, to publish a German-English version. This was done in 1987. 1993 I published a Special for the Newspaper Haller Tagblatt about the US Forces in Schwaebisch Hall and two years later another about the end of the war 50 years earlier. Michael S. Koziol 2007-08-07
Translation of the above article.
More than 30 years
The story of a
brandnew Me 262
Michael Sylvester Koziol, Schwäbisch Hall
Michael Sylvester Koziol, Schwäbisch Hall
It was always difficult to satisfy the superpowers
in getting insight about the technical knowledge of other nations. Quite
fresh is the memory about the escape of the Russian pilot who landed in
Coming to an end was
also the interest of the military court (Feldgericht)
Leiermann and Fay together with a few more pilots arrived from Neuburg/Danube to fly out 22 of the precious new jets at the same day. The only alternative would have been to destroy the planes. In that situation Hans Fay made his decision to defect to the Allies.
The chief pilot of the local facility gave assistance during the start up procedure and after getting airborne - what a surprise - Fay flew to the northwest while the rest headed as told to the south in the direction of Neuburg. Was his compass not working?
Fay had waited to
fulfil his plan until the
The arrival of Fay
was like a miracle, since the only information about the Me 262
available to the Allies had come from agents, airmen and from wrecks.
But now there was a factory fresh 262 in the hands of the
US Major Ernst Englander became Fay’s main
interrogator over the next days. He informed the HQ of the US Strategic
Air Force about the case. General Spaatz scheduled for 2nd April a staff
meeting with the request to hold Fay nearby in case there would arise
questions from General Henry H. Arnold. And, indeed, it occurred that
the Army Air Force Commander in Chief did talk with Fay in a suite at
the “Ritz” Hotel in
An exhausting time
began for Fay. He shuttled between Luxemburg,
Shortly after the
landing began the disassembling of the plane. The 262 was shipped under
highest priority via Thionville (France) aboard a ship to the states. On
After those flights was a very close examination of the 262 in order. Not a single detail was overlooked. The main recognition is summarised in the maintenance handbook and where it was literally written: The Me-262 is a twin engined, jet powered, single seat, combat plane. For use as a fighter, fighter bomber or recon aircraft. Built by the “Firma Autobedarf Schwäbisch Hall”.
The writing of the
handbook was still in progress when the flight test series began on
The end for the 262
came when on
More detailed information is not given due to safety measures by the US Air Force in 1979.
Many thanks for translating to Jürgen Weller,
|To the best of my knowledge, Hans Fay's Me 262, T-2-711, was never at Freeman Field. Early on, the aircraft had been assigned the number FE-107. Freeman and Wright Fields worked quite closely together. In one Freeman Field message, they requested being updated on the evaluation of Fay's parachute. Freeman Field made a contribution to the 1946 test program on the Me 262, preparing and sending to Wright Field Me 262 T-2-4012 (W.Nr. 500453), which, along with T-2-711 (W.Nr. 111711) were involved with the evaluation program against the P-80. Richard Eger 2007-08-07|
11/03/2007 - Initially, the aircraft was given the code FE-107. I think, also, there may have been codes FE-108 and FE-109 for other Me 262's, but the trail regarding these particular numbers is rather ephemeral. W.Nr. 111711 bore the number 711 in the tail and apparently, with the aircraft in hand, everyone gravitated to the number on the tail rather than the official designation FE-107. It became a fait accompli with the transition to the T-2 numbers, the aircraft becoming T-2-711. I don't think I've ever seen it referred to as either T-2-107 or FE-711. Richard Eger