Born in August 1932 out of rivalry, and sold to New York City royalty, in matter of months Bob Hall’s Springfield Bulldog Racer became legendary. It made hearts race and brought heartbreak—and by 1933 it was no more. In 1932, Bob Hall split with then well-known plane builders, the Granville Brothers, to start his own aircraft manufacturing business. The Bulldog, his second creation, was commissioned by Marion Guggenheim, whose personal pilot Russell Thaw flew the plane once and declared he would never fly the thing again. Hall scraped together funds to repurchase the aircraft from Mrs. Guggenheim and flew the plane himself in the prestigious 1932 Thompson Trophy Air Races against his former employers, the Granville Brothers. After 10 laps on the 10-mile course the Bulldog lost to the Granville’s machine. A despondent Bob Hall scrapped the Bulldog three months after he built it, however, aviation enthusiasts still talk about Hall’s Bulldog and its innovative design today.
The North Cascades Vintage Aircraft Museum, known for it’s unique collection of aircraft from the Golden Age of Air Racing, is in the process of painstakingly replicating this infamous plane.
Led by Museum Director Jim Jenkins, who is known for his award winning authentic recreation of Hall’s GeeBee Model “E” Sportster—which he built using the original designs—the Bulldog, when finished, is expected to be acutely akin to original due to Jim’s intimate knowledge of how Bob Hall liked to build a plane. We think it will be Smithsonian-worthy.
About thirty percent of the replication is complete – the engine, landing gear and basic fuselage are built. Obviously, much more work has to be done before the transformation is complete. So, to reignite this project and spearhead it’s completion, we’re proclaiming 2016 as “The Year of the Bulldog”.
We’re beginning our fundraising effort now so you can take advantage of tax breaks for 2015. We’ve set a goal of raising $175,000 to complete the project–funds will be used to put the museum staff on a fast track to complete the aircraft. It should take three to four years until the Hall Bulldog authentic replica makes its debut. And it will be the only known one in existence in the world.
Click below to make a donation today by visiting our Giving Fuel fundraising campaign.
You can choose to donate in suggested amounts or any amount of your choosing, and it can be a one-time gift or as a reoccurring contribution. We have gifts at every level.
We’ll keep you updated on the ongoing progress of the Hall Bulldog with blog posts, photos and videos and if you’re in our neck of the woods, we encourage you to come see it for yourself, in the flesh. Jim will be glad to see you and show you Bob Hall’s Springfield Bulldog, work-in-progress.
North Cascades Vintage Aircraft Museum is a 501(c)3 organization.