To help celebrate the US Air Force's 70th birthday, we take a look at the organization's origin and history. It is also one of Cheyenne's most important community assets with an economic impact of nearly $364 million a year.

Before there was an Air Force, there was the Signal Corps, which started during the Civil War. The corps hovered high in balloons as spotters and signaled the ground as to enemy activities. The Signal Corps didn’t become an official branch of the Army until 1863.

Along with the invention of the airplane, World War 1 and The United States Army Air Corps (USAAC) came into play. That is what the division was called between 1926 and 1941.

It changed names several times after that E.g. Air Service of the US Army, to the Air Corps and Army Air Force. Finally, in 1947, President Truman signed the National Security Act establishing The United States Air Force was officially born. That is when it finally became an independent military branch.

During the cold war, the Air Force was placed in charge of the country's national nuclear arsenal. That is why the F.e.Warren in Cheyenne is an Air Force base, but it doesn't have airplanes.

So let's do the math. If the branch was born in 1947 then the US Air Force would now be 70 years old.

From the old Sopwith Camel air plane to the modern F-22 Raptor that has stealth and can reach mach 2.25, the US Air Force has proven itself to be the baddest of the bad in the sky.

Happy 70th birthday, Air Force.