First we have a 1949, with the factory engraved logo “Love, Able Mabel”
The term, or nickname "Able Mabel", was given to the Martin AM-1 ( Mauler)
In service, the “Mauler” earned the nickname because of its remarkable load carrying ability,once lifting a 14,179 lb useful load, including 10,689 lbs of ordnance, easily the heaviest load ever carried by a single-engine piston-powered aircraft.
This is a great lighter as it was ordered by the MARTIN Company as a handout to Management & employees involved with the manufacture of the plane.
The lighters logo was intended to resemble the final words of a letter written to a loved one..
“Love, Able Mabel”
This group of lighters came from the estate of a long term employee of the Martin Co.
Employed from the mid 1940s through to the late 1950s, as an executive assistant to the president of the Martin Company (later Martin Aerospace, Martin Marietta and now Lockheed Martin)
She had also worked in a similar capacity, to U.S. Representative William Natcher from Kentucky.
I’m fortunate to have them all together still. Unused, and in MINT condition.
The first 4 lighters here are from the same original owner.
The others, at the bottom of the page, are not.
Here we have a 1950/51, with the etch & paint logo of the Martin XB-51.
MINT condition, with original box and paperwork.
Originally designated XA-45 (attack aircraft) In April of 1946. The USAF were calling for an aircraft with better performance, for all-weather, close-support bombing.
The revised USAF characteristics called for a re-designation of the Martin design, as XB-51. A fixed-price letter contract issued on May 23, 1946 called for two XB-51s, to be accompanied by wind tunnel models and mock-ups.
The XB-51 prototype (46-0685) flew for the first time on October 28, 1949. It was the USAF's first high-speed, jet-powered ground support bomber.
There were two of these prototype planes made. Both crashed.
But, here's the odd part: Both crashed after the XB-51 program was cancelled.
Third is a 1960 Martin Co. lighter showing various missiles, and the specially made pouch, with the Martin logo.
The pouch is very unique and was how the lighter was presented to the MARTIN company, from ZIPPO.
Therefore there was no box made for this lighter.
I have only seen one other with this logo, but never with the original pouch.
This one is MINT & in its original pouch.
Last, but not least is a 1958 two sided slim with “Martin Denver” on one side,
and “USAF SM-68 TITAN” on the reverse.
Rare to find a two sided slim with such great logos, and a facsimile of the SM-68 missile.
The “Titan” was the second Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) of the USAF, the USAF's first multistage design, and the largest ICBM ever deployed by the United States.
Testing of the SM-68 finally began in late 1958, and the first launch of an “XSM-68” prototype (which had only a dummy second stage) succeeded in February 1959.Development problems (several “XSM-68”s exploded on the pad) delayed the first successful two-stage flight until January 1960.
The Titan I, produced by the Glenn L. Martin Company, was a two-stage, liquid-fuelled, rocket-powered (first stage - 300,000 pounds of thrust; second stage - 80,000 pounds of thrust) ICBM,
which incorporated both radio and all-inertial guidance.
Deployed in a "hard" silo-lift launcher,
the Titan I had an effective range of 5,500 nautical miles.
1949 "LOVE, ABLE MABEL"
1950 "PLANE OF THE YEAR"
1958 "MARTIN TITAN SM-68"
1961 U.S. Navy Polaris
The Polaris missile was a submarine-launched, two-stage solid-fuel nuclear-armed ballistic missile (SLBM) built during the Cold War by Lockheed for the United States Navy. It was designed to be used as part of the US Navy's contribution to the United States' arsenal of nuclear weapons.
It first flew from Cape Canaveral on January 7, 1960.
This lighter is in Mint condition, in its original box
CV-63 Aircraft Carrier
The supercarrier USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63), formerly CVA-63, was the second naval ship named after Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, the site of the Wright brothers' first powered airplane flight. Kitty Hawk (or "Battle Cat", as she is affectionately known to sailors) was both the first and last active ship of her class, and the last conventionally-fuelled aircraft carrier in service with the US Navy.
For 10 years, Kitty Hawk was the forward-deployed carrier at Yokosuka Naval Base in Yokosuka, Japan. In October 2008, she was replaced in this role by the George Washington. Kitty Hawk then returned to the United States and had her decommissioning ceremony on 31 January 2009. She was officially decommissioned on 12 May 2009 after almost 49 years of service. Kitty Hawk was replaced by the George H. W. Bush.
U.S. Navy Boston SSN 703 Submarine
Los Angeles Class Attack Submarine. Launched, 19 April 1980; Commissioned, USS Boston (SSN-703), 30 January 1982; Decommissioned, 19 NUSS BOSTON was the 16th nuclear powered attack submarine in the LOS ANGELES-class. She was last homeported in Groton, CT., and after being decommissioned she was berthed at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Wash. for the next two years until taken from its berth at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard on October 31, 2001. BOSTON then went to the drydock where the scrapping commenced. Scrapping was completed in January 2002. The USS BOSTON Shipmates, Inc. was however, able to save the sail and rudder for display. These sections went to the Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park in Buffalo, NY for display. BOSTON was the first LOS ANGELES-class submarine to be preserved in such a manner.The BOSTON was the seventh ship in the Navy named after the city of Boston, Mass.
1977 Slim showing the CV63 Aircraft Carrier as well as the Wright Bros. Plane
1987 Slim with the SSN703 Nuclear Submarine
Interesting photos of a USSR submarine colliding with the USS Voge on Aug 28th 1976.
The top photo shows The "echo 2" aproaching the Voges port side.
The second Photo shows the Sub shortly after the subs bow collides with the Voges Stern quarter.
The third photo shows the Echo 2 flowndering with damage to both vessels.
The Soviets are unwilling to admit any fault in the incident, even though the submarine was operating in the submerged mode, and even though it overtook the Voge from the rear.
Check out the crew scrambling, in the second photo.
USS VOGE, FF-1047
"Merry Christmas 1955" lighter
USS Coral Sea CVA-43
Zippo began maufacturing belt buckles in 1966.
This is an early one. It was purchased onboard the vessel in 1967.
USS Coral Sea (CVA-43), a Midway-class aircraft carrier, was the third ship of the United States Navy to be named for the Battle of the Coral Sea. She earned the affectionate nickname "Ageless Warrior" through her long career. Initially classified as an aircraft carrier with hull classification symbol CV-43, the contract to build her was awarded to Newport News Shipbuilding of Newport News, Virginia on 14 June 1943.
This is one of the most desirable Grumman lighters you will ever find.
The brilliant air brushed colors, along with a great logo make this the most sought after Grumman Zippo out there.
Grumman was heavily involved with the manufacture of both Aircraft, and Commercial bodied vehicles. Everything from airplane fabrication to cube vans.
This lighter was made in 1956 and comes with its original Town & Country box. Town & Country refers to the air brushed style of paint used during this time period.
The other three were made between 1953 and 1975
Advanced Strategic Missile Systems
This beautiful and colorful lighter was made to order for those involved in the
"Advanced Strategic Missile Systems" program.
The lighter uses the solid fuel cell, that Zippo was experimenting with during this time period.
The ASMS program was first introduced in 1964, and tested by the US Navy.
ASMS was officially renamed AEGIS in 1969.
(AEGIS) Airborne Early Warning Ground Environment Integration Segment.
The Aegis Combat System is an integrated naval weapons system developed by the Missile and Surface Radar Division of RCA, and now produced by Lockheed Martin. It uses powerful computers and radars to track and guide weapons to destroy enemy targets.
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I recieved this lighter from the original owner, who was presented with this lighter as a commemorative to events of "The Cold War"
The letter (below) also accompanied the lighter to explain the meaning of the lighter.
These were "made to order" in Ltd. numbers, and presented (by The Captain) to select members of the crew that worked directly with the Captain.
Small tokens of appreciation, such as this, played a big part in boosting moral amongst crewmembers.
DoLetter of explaination
USS Coral Sea CVA-43
Benjamin Winfield Griffin
For me, a big part of collecting is knowing any history of a specific item.
In this case, I was contacted by a gentleman who had these items handed down to him from his Father-in-law, Mr. Ben Griffin.
Ben was born in Hartford County, Maryland in 1914 or 15
Ben, "Nicknamed Scotty" along with his brother Glenn,
both served in WWII with the "70th Tank Battalion"
Sgt. Ben Griffin was both Tank Commander & Driver, and his brother Glenn was a driver. Sadly, Ben witnessed the death of his own brother during WWII while in a tank battle between the Germans and the US troops, during the invasion of Cicily.
Benjamin would later become Master Seargent in the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment. " A.C.R. "
In November of 1961, the 3rd A.C.R.deployed to Germany in response to the Soviet threat during the Berlin Crisis during the Cold War.
The regiment remained in Germany conducting border operations until 1968.
Both Ben and his brother Glenn are spoken of in the book "Strike Swiftly"
A book written about the 70th Tank Battalion and their missions.