Autographed by Erich Hartmann.

L/E of 1000. Signed and numbered by the artist.

Size: 18" x 24"

Price: $275

With the coming of winter in 1944, the war in Europe had entered the sixth year. The German Luftwaffe had challenged allied air forces from the sunny shores of the Mediterranean, to the snow-covered mountains of Norway, to the broad dusty plains of Russia. Now the modern "Knights of the Black Cross" valiantly fought against overwhelming odds. Among them was a young man who, although only just over twenty years old, had already gained a place in history - one that will doubtless remain unchallenged.

Erich Hartmann, the highest scoring ace of all time, gained each of his 352 air victories while flying the Messerschmitt Me-109 on the eastern front. He joined Jagdgeschwader 52 in October 1942 and remained with that unit until he surrendered to Patton's troops in 1945. The aircraft pictured here over the mountains of eastern Europe in late 1944 displays the famous JG 52 badge and Hartmann's personal markings... the black tulip nose and the red heart. The latter marking signified his devotion to his sweetheart (karaya), who he called Usch. Her name is emblazoned upon the heart.

Harley Copic is one of America's finest aviation artists. His works in oil are truly aircraft portraits... each one requiring months to complete. Copic's paintings rise above the commonplace aviation art so readily available today not only because of superb accuracy but because of the sense of flight he conveys.