In a continuing effort to expand the versatility of their aircraft, VTOL designers have for many years tried to combine the desirable features of various concepts into a single aircraft. This is a formidable task and most efforts have met with limited success. This paper explores the need for an aircraft combining the efficient VTOL capability of a helicopter with the efficient high speed characteristics of a fixed wing turboprop. The ability of the tilt rotor concept to fill this requirement and examples as to its potential usefulness in both military and civil missions, is discussed. The history of the concept and the status of the current Army/NASA/Bell XV-15 program and its role in proving the viability of the concept are reviewed.