Marauder file photo [141]

B-26 Marauder

CountryUnited States
ManufacturerGlenn L. Martin Company
Primary RoleMedium Bomber


ww2dbaseThe B-26 Marauder medium bombers were designed by a team led by Peyton M. Magruder as a response to United States Army Air Corps Circular Proposal 39-640 of 1939. The design was accepted even before the prototype flew due to the great demand for a medium bomber for the war in Europe, and that proved to be unwise. Major design flaws that resulted in tricky high-speed landings and the frequent power losses that led to fatal rolls contributed to the nicknames such as "Widowmaker", "Flying Coffin", and "B-Dash-Crash" for the first batch of these bombers. After a Senate inquiry led by Senator Harry Truman to help the Glenn L. Martin Company find the causes of the problems, a new design was devised with larger wingspan, among other changes. The new design entered production in Feb 1941. They were still difficult aircraft to pilot, but they nevertheless entered the war under the banners of the United States Army Air Corps, Royal Air Force, and the South African Air Force due to the great demand.

ww2dbaseMarauders could be categorized into two main roles. Some variants of Marauders were built for medium-altitude bombing, which is their originally intended role. Later models, however, were equipped with additional machine guns so that they could support ground troops in strafing missions; these models were also used for low-level bombing missions.

ww2dbaseThe last mission flown by Marauders was in May 1945. They were retired from service after WW2 ended. 5,288 were produced between Feb 1941 and Mar 1945.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: Jul 2006


MachineryTwo Pratt & Whitney R-2800-43 radial engines rated at 1,900hp each
Armament12x12.7mm Colt-Browning machine guns, 1,800kg of bombs
Span21.65 m
Length17.80 m
Height6.55 m
Wing Area61.10 m²
Weight, Empty11,000 kg
Weight, Loaded17,000 kg
Speed, Maximum460 km/h
Speed, Cruising358 km/h
Service Ceiling6,400 m
Range, Normal1,850 km


Martin B-26 Marauder bomber control panel, 18 Feb 1941.B-26 Marauder with the 73rd Bomb Squadron armed with a Mark XIII aerial torpedo at Fort Randall Army Airfield, Cold Bay, Alaska, 11 May 1942US Army Air Force First Lieutenant James Muri and his crew posing before their B-26 Marauder, Midway, Jun 1942Head-on view of a B-26C Marauder bomber in flight, date unknown
See all 21 photographs of B-26 Marauder Medium Bomber

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed Hobilar says:
1 Sep 2007 10:51:30 AM

Under Lend-Lease, the Royal Air Force ordered a total of 522 Marauders and deployed them all in the Mediterranean theatre and with the South African Air Force. No 14 Squadron was the first RAF unit to be equipped and was operational within two months. RAF B-26s also supported Allied forces in Sicily, Sardinia and Italy, and by the end of March 1944 had dropped a total of 18,000 tons of bombs. In March 1943 six squadrons of Free French Air Force Marauders became operational, and these alongside other Allied B-26s supported the Allied invasion of Southern France in August 1944.
2. Alan says:
29 Jan 2011 04:33:18 AM

Although Portugal was the subject of a US arms embargo due to its African conflicts, seven B-26s were sold to the FAP (Portuguese Air Force)in 1965 to supplemtmmt the PV-2 Harpoons. These helped to compensate for the F-84G losses, which stood at five (mostly through accidents rather than enemy action) and increasing Soviet support for the MPLA Marxist rebels.
3. Mike Goskie says:
19 Nov 2014 10:52:35 AM

Looking for intel on B-26C that went down in a Mid-Air collision. Sgt. Alton P. Shaffer was killed. Location was Station 466.
4. Commenter identity confirmed David Stubblebine says:
19 Nov 2014 06:03:27 PM


USAAF Station 466 was RAF Membury in Berkshire. B-26's were not based there but that does not mean there could not have been an accident there. Aviation Archeology lists no B-26 accidents at Membury, but their records are admittedly incomplete.

If you really want help finding out more about this accident, a little more information would be required - like approximate date, bombing squadron, pilot's name, aircraft serial number, or something like that.
5. Timothy J. Smith says:
29 May 2017 09:47:50 PM

When the search for the B-26 flown David Dewhurst on D-Day was conducted what was the finding?
I have heard that it had been scrapped but do we know where or when?
6. Steve Dupont says:
23 Feb 2018 07:33:09 AM

I am looking for ANY information about a Capt. Clarence W. Sanders. Navigator, on a B-26. I understand he was on the Coughin Coffin assigned to the 34 Bomb Squadron, 17 Bomb Group But I am not 100 % sure on this so any info you can give me would be appreciated.
7. Rene Eustace says:
21 Aug 2018 08:00:30 AM

I am looking for any info available about the B-26 Glamorous Betty, which fought in the European theater of WWII. A friend's father was on this aircraft. It was shot down over France. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
8. Peter Thierry says:
5 Jul 2021 03:20:59 PM

Looking for info on B-26 Calcutta Commando in the CBI. Names of crew and station.
9. roger hardy says:
18 Jan 2022 07:33:30 AM

Looking for info on Cornelius O'Connor he flew B 26's off Malta, was an Australian Pilot.
10. Mike Wilson says:
21 Oct 2022 06:43:44 PM

Looking for info on the bomber named "Home Stretch" my great uncle was the crew chief. His name was Arly Moriarty. Thank you
11. Michael Coxie says:
1 Mar 2023 06:02:48 AM

looking for information on Lt. William W. Wolfe pilot of a b26 called belle of mt. rainier (spelled like the mountain in washington state) i have his cigarette lighter.

any help please appreciated.

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B-26 Marauder Medium Bomber Photo Gallery
Martin B-26 Marauder bomber control panel, 18 Feb 1941.
See all 21 photographs of B-26 Marauder Medium Bomber

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