B-25J Mitchell bomber, Serial Number 429028
B-25J Mitchell bomber, Serial Number 429028

The B-25 Mitchell was a twin-engined medium bomber used in World War II, and manufactured by North American Aviation. The aircraft was named in honor military aviation pioneer General Billy Mitchell.

The B-25 first flew on August 19, 1940, and the U.S. Army Air Corps accepted the first five B-25s in February of 1941.

The B-25 saw duty in every combat area being flown by the Dutch, British, Chinese, Russians and Australians in addition to U.S. forces.

Although the B-25 was originally intended for level bombing from medium altitudes, the plane was used extensively in the Pacific area for bombing Japanese airfields from treetop level and for strafing and skip bombing of enemy shipping.

The airplane is well remembered for its role in the Doolittle Raid, on April 18, 1942, the first air raid by the United States to strike the Japanese homeland during World War II.

Sixteen B-25B aircraft were launched from the U.S. Navy's aircraft carrier USS Hornet. The strike made the Japanese realize that they were vulnerable to attack, and served as a morale booster for the United States.

Of the 9,890 B-25s built during WWII, there are more than one hundred surviving aircraft around the world, most of which are located in the United States. Many B-25 aircraft in World War II, and the surviving B-25s today, have well-known nose art, as seen in the examples below.

B-25 Mitchell Bomber Nose Art Photographs from Our Archives

Bomber nose art on B-25J-5-NC "Yellow Rose", S/N 43-27868, operated by the Yellow Rose Squadron of the
Commemorative Air Force (CAF), San Marcos, TX

Mouseover the image to see an earlier version of the nose art paint scheme
before the vest and skirt were added to a more modest version of "Yellow Rose" (by R. Tate)
Nose art on B-25J-5-NC "Yellow Rose", S/N 43-27868, operated by the Yellow Rose Squadron of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF), San Marcos, TX
Nose art on the B-25J Mitchell "Lazy Daisy Mae" S/N 44-86891 near Merced, California
Nose art on the B-25J Mitchell "Lazy Daisy Mae" S/N 44-86891 in Atwater, California

 

Nose art on B-25J Mitchell, S/N 44-86872, "The Little King"
B-25J Mitchell, S/N 44-86872, "The Little King"
Nose art on North American PBJ-1J "Devil Dog" patrol bomber, a B-25 variant for the Marine Corps
Part of the Devil Dog Squadron of the Commemorative Air Force (CAF), located in Georgetown, TX
Nose art on North American PBJ-1J "Devil Dog" patrol bomber
Nose art on the B-25J "The Spirit of Al Penn" at the Pima in Tucson, Arizona
Nose art on the B-25J "The Spirit of Al Penn"

 

Other Examples of Present-Day B-25 Bomber Nose Art

Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Pacific Princess"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Pacific Princess"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Take-Off Time"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Take-Off Time"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Russian to Get Ya"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Russian to Get Ya"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Show Me!"
Nose art on B-25 Mitchell "Show Me!"