It's a fact that the B-17 almost never saw its place in history and the defeat of Nazi Germany, as the prototype, know as Model 299, crashed due to pilot error during its evaluation in October 1935. Thankfully, the design had shown such promise during the testing phase, in fact, far exceeding the requirements of the original specification, that further prototypes were ordered despite Boeing losing the original contract with the United States Army Air Corps. It was this further evaluation that saw the type enter active service in 1938. The actual name 'Flying Fortress' was coined by a newspaper hack who witnessed a roll-out of the machine, bristling with guns and turrets, and Boeing realised that this was the sort of propaganda they needed, and trademarked the name.
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