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Sikorsky H-19 Chickasaw

First Flight

10 November 1949


Main Display Hangar

Dimensions & Capacity

Crew: 2 – Capacity – 10 Troops / 8 Stretchers
Length: 42 ft 2 in (12.85 m) fuselage length excluding tail and main rotors; (UH-19D 42 ft 3 in (12.88 m)
Height: 13 ft 4 in (4.06 m)
Empty Weight: 4,795 lb (2,175 kg) (UH-19D 5,250 lb (2,380 kg)
Max Take Off Weight: 7,500 lb (3,402 kg) (UH-19D 7,900 lb (3,600 kg)


Speed: 101 mph (163 km/h, 88 kn) (UH-19D 112 mph (97 kn; 180 km/h)
Service Ceiling: 10,500 ft (3,200 m) (UH-19D12,500 ft (3,800 m)
Range: 450 mi (720 km, 390 nmi) (UH-19D 385 mi (335 nmi; 620 km)


Static Aircraft


None Normally Fitted: H-19s used for armament tests at Fort Rucker were experimentally equipped with a variety of automatic weapons and rockets. H-19s in Southeast Asia were sometimes equipped with door-mounted .30 in (7.62 mm) or .50 in (12.70 mm) caliber machine-guns for self-defense and suppression of enemy fire near landing zones.

Loan Status

This aircraft is owned by the Valiant Air Command

The Sikorsky H-19 Chickasaw (company model number S-55) was a multi-purpose helicopter used by the United States Army and United States Air Force. It was also license-built by Westland Aircraft as the Westland Whirlwind in the United Kingdom. United States Navy and United States Coast Guard models were designated HO4S, while those of the U.S. Marine Corps were designated HRS. In 1962, the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, and U.S. Marine Corps versions were all redesignated as H-19s like their U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force counterparts. Development of the H-19 was initiated privately by Sikorsky without government sponsorship. The helicopter was initially designed as a testbed for several novel design concepts intended to provide greater load-carrying ability in combination with easy maintenance. Under the leadership of designer Edward F. Katzenberger, a mockup was designed and fabricated in less than one year.

The first customer was the United States Air Force, which ordered five YH-19 aircraft for evaluation; the YH-19’s first flight was on 10 November 1949, less than a year after the program start date. This was followed by delivery of the first YH-19 to the U.S. Air Force on 16 April 1950 and delivery of the first HO4S-1 helicopter to the U. S. Navy on 31 August 1950. A U.S. Air Force YH-19 was sent to Korea for service trials in March 1951, where it was joined by a second YH-19 in September 1951. On 27 April 1951, the first HRS-1 was delivered to the U.S. Marine Corps, and on 2 May 1951, the first S-55 was delivered to Westland Aircraft. 1,281 of the helicopters were manufactured by Sikorsky in the United States. An additional 447 were manufactured by licensees of the helicopter including Westland Aircraft, the SNCASE in France, and Mitsubishi in Japan. The helicopter was widely exported, and used by many other nations, including Portugal, Greece, Israel, Chile, South Africa, Denmark, and Turkey. In 1954 the Marines tested an idea to enhance lift in hot and high and/or heavily loaded conditions by installing a rocket nozzle at the tip of each rotor blade with the fuel tank located in the center above the rotor blade hub. Enough fuel was provided for seven minutes of operation. Although tests of the system were considered successful, it was never adopted operationally.

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