USAAF Nose Art Research Project


Booby Trap
B-24H-20-FO 42-94802

490th Bomb Group


Nose art painted by
490th Bomb Group, 851st Bomb Squadron
Eye, England

Booby Trap

Assigned to the crew of 2Lt Charles Deano at Mountain Home AAB, Idaho on 10 April 1944 and flown via North Atlantic route to the UK. Served with 490BG whilst based at Eye. Nose art was painted by Jay Cowan with a "no-holds-barred" image of a well endowed lady whose attributes were cleverly incorporated into the titling. It was the first of several images created by Cowan who was clearly a great admirer of the female form and in great demand by the air crews.

Booby Trap is believed to be the only B24 Liberator painted by Cowan but after the group transferred to B17 Fortresses, at least six were given the Cowan treatment.

In December 1944 it was transferred out of the 490BG and sent to 2 SAD at Warton in Lancashire for modification prior to despatch to the Mediterrean and assignment to 885BS.

A taxi accident on 2nd April '45 at Rosignano in Italy, piloted by Lt Frederick Schwartze, may have brought its combat career to an end. However, it was repaired and by early June was headed back to the USA via Dakar for scrapping.


© Ray Bowden 12 August 2022