The Combat Air Museum Story

The Combat Air Museum was organized in the Fall of 1976 as a wing of David Tallichet's Yesterday's Air Force. The group was chartered in April 1977 as Yesterday's Air Force Kansas. The founding group's interest was aroused by the declining number of WWII operable aircraft.

Originally, the core of the display was aircraft from the Yesterday's Air Force large collection of dynamic historical aircraft. Most notable was the crown jewel of this collection, the B-24J Liberator bomber, the only one flying in the world at that time.

In the beginning, aircraft and memorablia were displayed under an agreement whereby volunteers from the local group would restore and maintain Yesterday's Air Force aircraft in return for the privilege of displaying them.

In 1979, the group reorganized under the name of Combat Air Museum and relocated to hangar #602 at Forbes Field.

The Society is incorporated under the laws of the State of Kansas as a not-for-profit, non-sectarian, non-partisan organization. It shall, at all times, operate as a tax-exempt organization within the meaning of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or corresponding sections of future United States Revenue Codes.

All donations to the Society are tax deductible within IRS guidelines.

Forbes Field Figures Significantly in the History of Topeka

The Topeka Army Air Field (TAAF) was placed into operation in 1942. Originally, B-24 Liberator bombers operated from the field, but during it's history it has been home to a large variety of flying units and aircraft types. The link below is a more detailed history.

A History of Forbes Field

Forbes Field Named After Daniel Hugh Forbes, Jr.
Born June 6, 1920 in Carbondale, KS (about 13 miles south of Topeka), Daniel was an only child of Daniel Sr. and Hattie Forbes of Topeka, KS. His wife was the former Hazel Moog of Defiance, OH. He graduated from North High School Wichita, KS, then attended Wichita University Wichita, KS (now Wichita State University) and Kansas State College, Manhattan, KS (now Kansas State University). Forbes joined the US Army 5 June 1941 as an Aviation Cadet. During his career he became one of the pioneers of strategic photo reconnaissance, flying combat missions from bases in North Africa and India piloting the B-17, B-24, and several other aircraft. He continued the photo reconnaissance missions in the Pacific theater, flying the B-29 airframe (re-designated F-13), and continued through the Bikini Atoll atomic bomb tests. His last assignment was as a test pilot, Flight Test Center Wright Field, OH. Daniel Hugh Forbes, Jr. was killed during a test flight of a YB-49 (flying wing) aircraft on June 5, 1948.

Museum Contact Information:
Phone: (785)-862-3303
Fax: (785)-862-3304
Mail: P.O. Box 19142, Topeka, KS 66619
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