The Stearman "Kaydet," originally designed for civilian aviation, was adopted by the U.S. Army and Navy as a primary trainer from 1936 to 1945. Known as "Stearmans," they were actually built by Boeing who, in 1934, had acquired the Stearman Aircraft Company. The design was practically considered an antique when introduced, but the biplanes were rugged, maneuverable, and ideal for the rigors of military flight training. Most Stearmans survived the war and many became prized as crop dusters and airshow performers.
The Museum's "Kaydet" was manufactured as an Army PT-13A, but was restored with the Continental R-670 engine used in the PT-17 model. Built in 1937, it was the 55th of over 8,585 "Kaydets" produced.