While looking through my flickr contact’s pictures I came a across an image of an abandoned 404 Martin Passenger Plane west of Paris Texas. The photographer even gave some directions on how to find the old abandoned Museum where the old bird now rests and has been there since 1991.
I did a little research and found the air plane sitting just outside of Paris, Texas about 8 miles west of town on Highway 82. When I realized that it was only a few hours a way I decided that would be the direction of my road trip. I decided that I would take HWY 121 East from Anna Texas, up through Bonham, Texas and then shoot over to HWY 82. If I had time, I would stop at a few places in Bonham and in Paris that were favorite abandoned places that the local photographers love to shoot.
From Bonham to Paris, there wasn’t that many places to stop. I found a few potential places and decided to scout them out on the way home and then do a little research before spending more time at those places.
Abandoned 404 Martin Passenger Plane Tail Number 4255S History
Before going into detail about the current state of the Abandoned 404 Martin Passenger Plane, tail number N255S, I want to share some of the research/history I found on the plane.
The plane was built in 1952 and was put into service for several different airlines including, Southern Airlines, Florida Airlines, and ending its commercial career with Pro-Air. The plane still wears her Pro-Air colors and logo proudly as she is ignored by everyone except by photographers and those just curious as to why its sitting abandoned in a field outside of Paris, Texas.
The Abandoned 404 Martin Passenger Plane 4255S Current Resting Spot
The plane now rests on the old Flying Tiger Airport & Flight Museum, just west of Paris Texas, and is owned and registered to a stunt pilot who has been on several popular movies and TV shows. From several different sources the plane may have been here since 1991.
I couldn’t find any history on the plane for the 80s. Noel Kerns source says the plane was in service with Pro-Air until 1997. This is something I will have to verify next time I can get up to Paris and talk with the owner.
The Flying Tiger Airport & Flight Museum
There isn’t much left of the old museum, just the old 404 resting out front of an old hangar and a few old planes including what looks like an old Piper Cub rotting and other plan with missing parts both in old hangars. Out back in the weeds you can find some old stripped down Cessna fuselages that have seen better days.
From what I found during my research the museum had some incredible retired war birds that were restored and on display for the public. A few the plans I found they had were a B-17 Flying Fortress (bomber WWII), P-51 Mustang (WWII), F-86 Sabre, and a F4U Corsair.
I am not sure why this place was shut down or what happened to the old birds that made their home at the Flying Tiger Museum, I do plan on visiting the place and see if I can find the owner. I love to get access to the 404 and get some history on the plane and the Flying Tiger.
When I visited the place, the owner was around, but he was busy working on something and I didn’t want to bother the man. Plus I didn’t have my DSLR and I wasn’t ready to access the plane if I could have gotten permission.
For images of the Abandoned 404 Martin Passenger Plane, check out my Abandoned Air Plane Set on Flickr