B-24 Liberator Bombers - Story of the Worlds Largest Factory in WW2.
Willow Run, Colossus of American Industry, written by Warren Benjamin Kidder. A true story of the production of the B-24 Liberator and the building of the Willow Run Airport Bomber Plant.
Ejecutar el Willow Bombardero de plantas y
B-24 Libertador Bombers - Historia del universo más grande de la fábrica en WW2.
Willow Run is a book that was written by my friend Warren Benjamin Kidder about the B-24 Liberator, WW2 Bomber Production Plant and Airport near Detroit Michigan.The following pages tells about this great factory and production plant where the WW2 B-24 Liberator was built which uses many references from this book. This book is about the Willow Run manufacturing plant for the B-24 Liberators in the pastoral countryside east of Ypsilanti, Michigan, near the Village of Denton just outside of Detroit.. Ben Kidder was the last person to live on the Willow Run property before Ford Motor Company built the famous B-24 bomber plant. Ben actually met Henry Ford a couple of times and Mr. Ford knew Ben also. I've read a lot of this book, Willow Run, and it is very surprising that the Ford plant could complete these B-24 Liberators with a new B-24 's coming off of the assembly line every 56 minutes. This book, Willow Run, tells the whole story in great detail. The B-24 Liberator was built by license of the Consolidated Aircraft Corporation in San Diego, California. My Aunt was one of the workers at the consolidated Aircraft Company in San Diego building the B-24 Liberators. She was at my house today, here in Macomb. C. Jeff Dyrek.
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Be sure to read on and
click on the below
to see some exciting pictures
of the Willow Run B-24 Manufacturing Plant built by Henry Ford
This is the cover from the Book
"Without Sorensen's Mass Production of the B-24
The Air War against Hitler's Third Reich
Would have Been Impossible."
(The Eighth Air Force)
In the following pages you will
see the many photo's and the history of the
Willow Run B-24 Liberator Manufacturing Plant
the Willow Run Tour Below
Willow Run Home Page
Learn about the Willow Run Airport History and the History of the building of the B-24 Liberator. Click the Arrow Below
The following is an excerpt
from a letter from the
F.C. "Hap" Chandler
Thank you for taking the time to visit our matchless Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum. It was a pleasure to work with you regarding the history and "Time Line" of the Mighty Eighth during World War II. Your book, "Willow Run" Colossus of American Industry is a classic and much needed addition to the history of the Mighty Eighth's activities during World War II. It has been very helpful to our year long study of the accomplishments of the wartime 8th Air Force as, without the production of large numbers of B-24 bombers, the air war against the Third Reich would have been impossible.
Henry Ford's 80 Acre Factory with a mile long assembly
Employed more than 40,000 people.
Here's Warren Benjamin Kidders New Book, The Mighty Eighth Air Force Here's the Movie Script for Willow Run
When Japan’s Admiral, Irsoroku Yamamoto bombed Pearl harbor, and destroyed all of the US battleships laying in anchor, he said:
"I FEAR all we have done is to awaken a sleeping Giant."
What the Admiral did not know was that his giant, was already awake and building the largest industrial factory in the world with a production line more than a mile long at, where would employ 40,000 people to Mass produce the twenty ton, four engine, B-24 "Liberator" bomber at the unbelievable rate of one every hour.
The B-24 would be flown by the Mighty Eighth Air Force to defeat Hitler in his war against England which, in just a few short days after Pearl Harbor, would be declared by America’s President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, to be America’s war as well.
In Sheer magnitude and complexity, Sorensen’s production of thebomber at Willow Run would represent the greatest achievement of the industrial age in war or peace.
In the South Pacific, Sorensen’s B-24s would be used by General MacArthur, for his island hoping battles to open way for the atomic bomb to be dropped on Yamamoto’s own Japan and bring about an end to the war that, he himself, had started at Pearl Harbor.
Sorensen already finished paving the last of six concrete runways totaling 40,6447 feet on a 1,434 acre airport which required seventy five miles of drain tile, up to four feet in diameter, that he had started ; And, that he would produce his first B-24 bomber part in a still unfinished factory., just four days before ’s airplanes bombed Pearl Harbor, he could not have known that
Sorensen continued building his 3,503,016 sq. ft. factory, and increased production until he achieved his goal of making the B-24s at the rate of one an hour, which the Eighth Air Force later discover was the same rate Hitler was shooting them out of the skies over Europe.
Sorenson’s production goal at Willow Run was enormous, its achievement prodigious. His task was to increase production output from a craft production rate of a bomber every thirteen days to a mass production rate of a bomber an hour. And, in two days less than a year from ground breaking, he had produced the First Center Wing Section for the airplane in a still unfinished factory. By April 1944, he was producing four hundred and sixty-two bombers at the rate of one every 59.34 minutes.
The enormous accomplishment of Sorensen and the men and women from Willow Run can only be fully appreciated when one realizes that in 1941, before Ford entered the aircraft industry it required 201,826 man-hours to manufacture a single B-24 bomber. In March 1944, Sorensen’s Willow Run Procedures of mass production had reduced those man-hours to only 17,357.
Without his vision to build Willow Run, and his ability to manufacture the B-24 at the rate of one an hour, the Allied Forces would not have had sufficient long range heavy bombers for their massive raids over Europe; and, to reopen the Atlantic Ocean, where Hitler’s submarines had taken control of the international waters and shipping lanes, destroying 750,000 tons of shipping during the first three weeks of March 1942.
Lack of long range heavy bombers had already brought about many early defeats in the Philippines. Including the "Bataan Death March," and without Sorensen’s vision and industrial expertise Hitler could easily have won World War II.
Every time I have written about Willow Run there has hovered in my mind the image of Charles E. Sorensen whose fate was so grandly conceived that he was destined to significantly change the course of twentieth century history.
Click here for a Satellite Photo of the Willow Run Plant and Airport Today
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Here's another Book Review about
a B-24 Pilot in WW2, Jessie Pettey,
One More Mission, A Journey from Childhood to War.
Click Here to go
YellowAirplane Online Museum
The Mighty Eighth Air Force in Action during World War II. Shows the building of the B-24 Liberator, Doolittle's Raids, Ploesti Raids, and a list of every mission flown by the Eighth Air Force.
See the B-24 Research Exhibit by John Bybee
Little Friends 8th Air Force Fighter Groups by Peter Randall
Zeno's Warbird Video Drive-in Great Warbird Videos
B-24 Liberator Movies B-24 Liberator Aviation Art B-24 Liberator Models B-24 Liberator Books
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