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    Navigator Theodore "Dutch" Van Kirk's Enola Gay Log, in pencil, 2 large folios, 26" x 20.25" and 26" x 10". Tinian Island to Hiroshima, Japan, and back, August 6, 1945.

    Capt. Theodore "Dutch" Van Kirk was the navigator of the Enola Gay, the B-29 bomber which dropped the world's first atomic bomb used in war. The historic flight lifted off from Tinian Island at 2:45 A.M. on August 6, 1945. At 15 seconds past 8:15 a.m., "Little Boy," a 9,000-pound uranium-235 core-fissionable atomic bomb was released over Hiroshima, Japan. Forty-three seconds later, after the bomb detonated at 1,890 feet, the city was decimated; 71,000 were killed or assumed dead, 68,000 were injured and 60,000 buildings were destroyed. A second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, three days later. Japan surrendered a week later. The war in the Pacific was over. World War II had ended.

    All times noted in the log are local Tinian time, one hour ahead of Hiroshima time. All speed and distance figures are in nautical miles (knots). "Our takeoff time was 2:45 A.M...The Enola Gay was stripped down - a big metal tube with a lot of instruments and people in it...anything we did not absolutely need, we discarded," recalled Van Kirk years later. "It was about 6,000 lbs. lighter. The purpose of the log, was to record flight data used by the navigator to keep the airplane on course and on time, and, also, to allow the navigator to determine aircraft location in a short time in the event of problems with the plane or bomb." Concerning the method of navigation, Van Kirk explained, "the line of small uninhabited volcanic islands between Tinian and Iwo Jima permitted good course control via radar. During darkness, until about 4:45 A.M., celestial sightings on the star Polaris gave latitude readings and therefore good speed lines on the course we were flying. During daylight, betwe

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2007
    25th-26th Thursday-Friday
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