Rare WWII Glider housed in Iron Mountain museum

Iron Mountain is home to the World War II Glider and Military Museum, which features one of only seven complete CG-4A Gliders in the world.

The Glider seen here was rebuilt over the course of six and a half to seven years from parts gathered from around the country. It took an additional year and a half to set it up in the museum.

Gliders were built during WWII to serve as transports for troops, vehicles and supplies.

Clyde Unger, who rebuilt the Glider, said, “With the Glider you could bring in a group of men and equipment ready to fight from the get go. As soon as they left the plane they were a combat force. They could carry the jeeps, 75mm Howitzers, all the medical supplies, the food, the ammunition with them. They were ready to go.”

Gliders aren’t necessarily remembered , but they played major roles in some of WWII’s biggest battles.

“In Normandy they used something like 500 Gliders,” Unger said. “In southern France they used 400 Gliders. Then they got to Operation Market Garden in Holland, they used almost 1,900 Gliders, British and American combined. And for the German invasion they used something like 1,300 Gliders.”

The Ford Motor Company built 4,190 Gliders in Kingsford, sometimes building as many as eight in one day at the height of their use.

The museum also features a Cornish Pumping Engine that was used to keep water from flooding the Chapin Mine. It has the capacity to pump over 5 million gallons of water in a single day.