Three days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Lockheed’s Burbank plant needed to decide how to best ramp up production and disguise the most strategic military facility to look like an ordinary California suburb, in other words, the ultimate camouflage.
Recruiting artists, set designers, and painters from nearby movie studios, including Disney, Paramount, and 20th Century Fox, the grand illusion was implemented.
An elaborate system of underground walkways was constructed to allow for free movement across the plant, while the installation of air ducts provided proper ventilation.
After completion, the team’s work was tested by taking a War Department general on a reconnaissance flight at 5,000 feet. The general said he could only see suburb after California suburb.
Over 100,000 people were employed in Burbank, California which built the P38 along with Hudson bombers and Boeing B17’s.
Watch the video to discover a little more about this facility and how it helped to win the war.