Below are 42 images of people that signed the Davis-Monthan
Airfield Register between 1925 and 1936. In many cases I
provide links to the individual web page biographies I have
developed for them. In some cases, too, more than one signer
of the Register is captured in an image.
The annotation for the image below reads, "Eight of the
13 Black Cats, A Hollywood stunt team, Art Goebel center
standing, Glendale, CA". The Black Cats worked in the moving
picture industry during the late 1920s. They have a pretty
good web presence, with this link providing
a brief description.
Eight of the 13 Black Cats
From another source (see Wynne book in the REFERENCES, p.39)
I identify the pilots as, L to R, rear: Al Johnson,
Bon MacDougall, Art
Goebel, Fronty Nichols
and Paul Richter. Front,
L to R: Herb McClelland, Sam Greenwald, Spider Matlock. The Black Cats
performed many of the exciting aerial stunts of the early
movie industry. They had a fixed price list for their stunts,
ranging from $1,200 for crashing an airplane into a tree
or house, to $50 for "Plane spins down on fire, does not
Gens. Caleb Haynes (L) and Hap Arnold, Barrackpur, India
Left, Henry “Hap” Arnold signed
the Register twice, on March 17, 1930 and on August 23, 1933.
The caption on the original image states, "Gens. Caleb
Haynes and Henry Arnold, Barrackpur, India 1943". Haynes
did not sign the Register.
Charles Babb (L) and Paul Mantz, 9/23/34
Charles Babb signed the Register once on January 27, 1926.
Follow the link to learn more about Babb and his military
and business life. The photo annotation reads, "Charles Babb
(left) and Paul Mantz, Glendale, CA 9/23/34". Mantz did not
sign the register.
Marty Bowman and Z.D. Granville
At left, Martie
Bowman and Zantford
Granville are both signers
of the Register. Please follow the links to learn more about
them, their landings at Tucson and the airplanes that brought
them here. The caption on the original photograph says,
"Marty Bowman and Z.D. Granville with Gee Bee #7, Chicago,
The caption is slightly in error, as the airplane Bowman
is in is the the Model Y (race #54). She ran this airplane
in the Women's International Free-For-All during the International
Air Races at Curtiss-Wright-Reynolds Airport in Chicago,
IL September 1-4, 1933. She took third place with an average
speed of 168.86 MPH and won $375.
Casey Jones, September 5, 1926
Charles Sherman "Casey" Jones signed the Register
at Tucson once on October 6, 1927. Based in Chicago he landed
solo from Los Angeles, stayed overnight and departed on the
7th for El Paso, TX. He was flying an unidentified Douglas
aircraft with "NAT" written
in the A/C registration number field. The image at right
was taken about a year before his Tucson visit.
The annotation on the original image reads, "The famous
Casey Jones with his Curtiss Oriole at the Philadelphia Air
Mr. & Mrs. Casey Jones and, Mr. & Mrs.
Frank Russell, Curtiss Plant Manager at, Garden City, NY
Robert Dake (L) & Russell Young, 6/6/33
Right, Bob Dake and Russ Young in an image taken on June
6, 1933 at Pittsburgh, PA.
Dake landed once at Tucson on
September 9, 1928. He and passenger Ted Taney were westbound
NM to Los
Angeles, CA. They flew an American
Moth NX7556. The National Air Races were held September 8-16,
1928. We are seeing Dake and Taney sign the Register
near the last legs of their 2nd place win that year (28:18:43)
of the "On to Los Angeles" class "A" cross-country race.
Dake and Taney were only one of over 20 other racers
who descended into Tucson on their way wes that day. Later,
Dake was an Honorary Member, Contest Committee (Civil Aeronautics
Authority) for the 1939 Air Races.
Russell Young landed four times at Tuscon during 1930. He
flew Ryan NC712, and Lockheeds NC107W and NC904Y.
Capt. Russell A. Young flew with Central Airlines, Inc.
Bob Dake (R), 9/2/35
Image, left, of (L-R) Jack Morris, Helen MacCloskey, Mrs.
Dake and Bob Dake,
Cleveland 9/2/35. This was the last day of the 1935 National
MacCloskey set individual records in 1936 for distance and
The image below shows Richard
Depew (under propeller with
helmet and goggles). The image annotation identifies the
airplane as a "Fairchild FC-1, FIRST one, Curtiss OX-5 90
HP". This Fairchild is NOT the one, 8003, that
he flew to Tucson September 7, 1928.
Richard Depew, Date Unknown
Rather, this airplane was flown earlier, in 1926, by Depew
in the Ford
Air Tour that year. At the time, Depew was Fairchild's
vice president for sales. This image probably was taken near
James Doolittle, Los Angeles, 9/2/36
James Doolittle,left, landed once at Tucson on October
9, 1927. This image was taken on September 2, 1936 at Los
Angeles, CA. It was a little breezy that day (note coat tail).
The annotation on the photograph, below, states, " Gen.
Ben Foulois, first Army A.C., Pilot. Bolling Field".
Foulois signed the Davis-Monthan Register on August 5, 1932.
Based at Bolling Field, Washington, DC, he was flying Douglas
aircraft 31-433. He was eastbound, having arrived solo from
Rockwell Field, San Diego, CA at 12:30PM.
Ben Foulois, Date Unknown
Below, Maj. Gen. Benjamin D. Foulois in a formal portrait
taken at Washington, DC February 5, 1962.
Ben Foulois, February 2, 1962
The annotation on this images says, "Curtiss F9C-2 “Sparrowhawk”, Wright
R-975-E3 435HP, BuAer 9057, 1934 Navy Scout". Although this
airplane is not a Register airplane, it is of interest because
Register pilot A.W. Gorton was the first pilot to hook a
Sparrowhawk onto a dirigible (the USS Los Angeles). Another Register pilot, Frederick Trapnell, also worked with the aircraft-dirigible mating. Please direct your browser to his link to see other photographs of this process.
Curtiss F9C-2 “Sparrowhawk”
This image is probably not of Gorton, but of a similar airplane
and hook geometry. The U.S. Navy experimented with a variety
of methods for launching and recovering aircraft.
Gorton landed at Tucson four times between 1928 and 1933.
Once he flew Vought O-2U Corsair, A-7572. The other times
he flew Ford transport NC8400.
The image of Marion Grevemberg, below, was taken on July
28, 1928 at Rogers Field, Pittsburgh, PA. The annotation
on the images says,"Lt. Marion Grevemberg, With his “Swallow” at
,Rodgers Field 7/28/28." Interestingly this airplane is a
Lincoln-Page LP-3, which was frequently mistaken for the
This Lincoln-Page, NC5961,
landed twice at the Davis-Monthan Airfield, both times piloted
by Grevemberg. Please follow the link to learn more about
the life of this airplane, pilot Grevemberg and Rogers Field.
Lt. Marion Grevemberg
Like Bob Dake, above, we find Grevemberg and Malone signing
the Register near the last legs of their 19th place win that
year (38:48:26) of the "On to Los Angeles" class "A" cross-country
Below, a Group Photo taken at Los Angeles in 1928. The occasion
is unknown. Does anyone know?
Group Photo 1928
The annotation on the image in the Klein collection identifies the people as follows
(asterisked people signed the Register as either pilots
or passengers): 1 ?, 2 ?, 3 ?, 4 Casey Jones*, 5 Waldo
Waterman, 6 Tommy Thomas, 7 Earl Ovington, 8 Vic Clark,
9 Jack Maddux*, 10 ?, 11 Amelia Earhart*, 12 Mcdonell,
13 ?, 14 Elinor Smith (with whom Bobbi Trout would set a women's refueled endurance record on November 27-29,1929), 15 Mrs Jack Maddux*, 16 ?, 17 ?,
This image has stimulated a couple of email questions. One questioned the possibility that the image was taken earlier than 1928. This is probably not the case, as Bobbi Trout had only learned to fly and soloed on April 30, 1928. The second pointed out that the person identified as Earle Ovington (with right arm in sling) is not him. This is correct, as my correspondent has researched and produced a film about the Ovington family. Rather, the taller gentleman behind the one with the sling is Ovington. Regardless, does anyone have an identity for this other person and know why his arm was in a sling? Is he Tommy Thomas?
Kelly and John
Macready's Fokker T-2 flown
by them in the first non-stop trans-continental flight across
the United States.
Kelly & Macready's Fokker (Dutch-built) T-2
Follow the links to Kelly & Macready for information about
their trans-continental flight, and about their lives as
The annotation on this image says it was taken October
6, 1922 in San Diego, CA. The annotation also states,
"Fokker (Dutch-built) T-2
(F-IV), Liberty 12-A 420 HP, AS 64233, Macready and
Kelly cross, Country & endurance record plane, FIRST
non-stop coast-to-coast flight October 5&6, 1922, San
Diego, CA 1922".
The dates are in error, as the New York to San Diego cross-country
flight was made May 2-3, 1923 by Kelly and Macready.
LeVier on September 4, 1938. The annotation
on this image states, "Louis W. Greve and Tony LeVier With
Greve Trophy won by LeVier at Cleveland N.A.R. 9/4/38".
Louis W. Greve and Tony LeVier
The annotation on the image, below, states, "Schoenfeldt-Rider R-4 “Firecracker”,
Menasco C-S4 550 HP, NX261Y, Tony LeVier won Greve Trophy, Cleveland
1938". Although this airplane is not signed into the Davis-Monthan Register,
there are many late 30s air racer images like this in the Klein Archive.
Schoenfeldt-Rider R-4 “Firecracker”
A. Lindbergh leaving Bettis Field for downtown
Pittsburgh on August 4, 1927. Bettis Field was located where
the Westinghouse nuclear facility is today. Follow the link
to learn about Lindbergh's activities when he landed at
Tucson as part of the tour. Follow this link to see motion
picture footage of Lindbergh and his airplane during his
visit to Tucson.
Charles Lindbergh, August 4, 1927
This is part of Lindbergh’s U.S. tour after his Atlantic
The tour started at Mitchel Field,
Long Island, New York, July 20, 1927, and ended at Mitchel
Field on October 23, 1927. Barely a month into the tour he
already looks exhausted.
John Livingston, Cleveland, OH 9/2/34
The annotation on this image states, simply, "John Livingston,
Cleveland, OH 9/2/34". This was next to the last day of the
National Air Races that year.
Livingston was an air racer of high reputation during
the Golden Age. He landed three times at Tucson flying Ryan
and Waco NX7527 (twice).
Please follow the links for additional information about
Livingston and his aircraft.
Russell Maughan, Date Unknown
Right and below, two images of Russell
Maughan. The first image was taken at an unidentified
location and date. The airplane is also unidentified.
The image below shows Lieut. Russell Maughan and his “Dawn
to Dusk” PW-8 Special. Please follow the link for
more information about pilot Maughan and this airplane. The
annotation on this second image states, " First Dawn
to Dusk flight, Curtiss PW-8, Curtiss D-12 440 HP,
24-204 23 June 1924 Lt. Russell Maughan, On his fourth attempt
flew coast-to-coast daytime, Dayton, Ohio 6/10/24".
24-204 is not cited in the Register.
Russell Maughan, June 10, 1924, Curtiss 24-204
The caption for this image is slightly in error, since Maughan
completed his record flight on the third attempt.
Image, below, annotation reads, "Army Fliers at Mineola,
NY ready For flight to Nome, Alaska. Capt. St. Clair Street
[sic, should be Streett], Lt. Clifford C. Nutt, Lt. Ross
C. Kirkpatrick, Lt. Erik Nelson, Lt. E. Cromie [sic, should
be C.E. Crumrine], Sgt. Englis (English?), Sgt. Henriques and Sgt. Vierra".
Davis-Monthan Pilots Clifford C.
Nutt (2nd from Left), Erik Nelson
& C.E. Crumrine (4 & 5 from Left)
The date of this photo was not cited, but their 15-day flight
to Alaska set out on July 15, 1920. Pilots Nutt,
the Davis-Monthan Register. Please follow the links for more
information about these pilots, and about Nelson's icy ride
astride the fuselage of his deHavilland. This same photograph, from a different source, is displayed on the Group Photographs page.
two images below, was a well-known air racer of the mid-1930s.
Please follow the link to learn more.
Harold Neumann, 9/4/36
Before he established his reputation as an air racer, he
landed solo at Tucson on August 20, 1931 flying Travel Air
NC5237. Based in Moline, IL he was westbound from El Paso,
TX to Santa
The date on this image, right, is September 4, 1936. Note
the IRVIN parachute, a popular brand of 'chute.
The annotation on the image says, "Harold Neumann, Won Shell
race flying Folkerts
“Toots” R283Y, Los Angeles 9/4/36".
Image, below, taken October 19, 1935 at Pittsburgh, PA.
Harold Neumann, 10/19/35
The annotation on this image states, "Harold Neumann, Pittsburgh
10/19/35, Neumann won 1935 Thompson Trophy Race, Flying Ben
Howard’s “Mr. Mulligan”.
below, in an undated photograph. Parker landed nine times
at Tucson between 1927 and 1931. He flew Travel Air
(NC 89, NC3019) and Lockheed (NC898E, NC972Y)
aircraft. Please follow the links to learn more about Parker
and some of his airplanes.
Billy Parker With Curtiss "Pusher" Replica
The annotation on the image, left, states, "Curtiss “Pusher” Replica,
Curtiss OX-5 90 HP, N66U s/n 8, Billy Parker Built".
Image, below, of Wiley
Post and Harold
Gatty taken July
29, 1931. Please follow the links to learn more about pilot
Post and his passenger Gatty. Wiley Post landed at Tucson
a dozen times between 1928 and 1931. He carried various
passengers, but Harold Gatty accompanied him only once,
on February 17, 1931.
Wiley Post (L) and Harold Gatty
The annotation on the original photograph states, "Wiley
Post and Harold Gatty, at Bettis
Field (Pittsburgh, PA),
7/29/31, Wiley Post killed in Alaska 8/16/35 along with Will
Post flew Lockheed (NC31E, NC336H, NC49M, NC522K, NC7954 and NC974H)
and Ryan (NC732M) aircraft to Tucson. The Lockheed he flew
with Gatty on board was not identified by registration number.
However, chances are high it was the "Winnie Mae" (NC105W),
because their visit to Tucson was about 4 months before their
around the world flight (completed June 23 to July
1, 1931 to successfully set the
record of 7 days, 18 hours, 43 minutes covering 15,590 miles).
Tex Rankin (R), September 1938
Tex Rankin landed
solo at Tucson September 9, 1928 flying Waco NC4331. Caption
on image, right, states, "Tex Rankin (right) and son Dale,
Rankin was an aerobatic pilot, air show performer, successful
air racer and flight instructor. He owned one of the largest
flight schools in the nation, and in the world, during the
1920s and 30s. Many Hollywood stars of the era learned to
fly at Rankin's school.
We are left to wonder what was in his pockets. I asked Bill
Piper, Jr., one of the few signers of the Davis-Monthan Register
whom I have met personally, what was in his pockets in a
1934 image. The answer is here.
Royce was a frequent military visitor. He landed
at Tucson six times between 1927 and 1932.
Ralph Royce, June 1, 1937
The image above is annotated, " Boeing P-26B 'Peashooter',
R-1340-33 600 HP, 33-180, Lt.Col. Ralph Royce, Pittsburgh
6/31/37". He was a Colonel at this time in command of the
1st Pursuit Group at Selfridge Field, Detroit, MI.
Ruckstell Corporation Sign, 1930
This image from 1930 shows a beautiful EMSCO B-3A, NC153W,
which does not appear
in the Register, but it was flown across the Pacific Ocean by Register pilot Cecil A. Allen and copilot Don Moyle. It is in the livery "Clasina Madge" (painted on the fuselage) as Allen and Moyle flew it. If the date on the image is correct, this photograph was taken before the trans-Pacific flight, which occurred in September, 1931. Also relevant is the sign on the building behind the nose of
the airplane. Ruckstell Corp. Ltd. was the business of Glover “Roxy” Ruckstell,
a Register signer.
Below are two images from 1928 that show both a Register
pilot and (probably) airplane.
J. Warren Smith (2nd from Right), Ryan Factory,
The annotation on the image above reads: "J. Warren
Smith at Ryan factory 1928 To pick up CP Mayher’s [sic]
first Ryan B-1, Right: Walter Chambers, Phg Sun Tele and
Ryan representatives, Tom Mathews and AJ Edwards- Sales Mgr."
Smith is second from right. The Ryan factory was located
In the second image, below, note there is no registration
number painted on the empennage yet. Also, the date of the
only arrival by Warren at the Davis-Monthan Airfield suggests
the date of the image is off by a year; it should be 1927.
This airplane could be, and most likely is, the Ryan identified
as NC2054, which was flown to the Airfield and signed into
the Register by Smith on September 11, 1927. At this landing,
journalist Walter Chambers (above) was the sole passenger
J. Warren Smith, Ryan Factory, 1928
The annotation on the image above reads: "J. Warren
Smith at Ryan Factory 1928 To pick up CP Mayer’s first
There are two discrepancies that show up for these images
besides the dates. First, NC2054 shows up as a Waco GXE in aerofiles.
Perhaps Smith was told that the airplane would be assigned
registration 2054, but the assignment was changed later to
something else. Second, Smith identifies the airplane as
a model B-2 in the Register, whereas it is identified as
a B-1 in both images. If you can sort out these discrepancies,
please let me know.
Carl Spatz et al., 1943
At left, Register pilot Carl
Spatz (2nd from left). The
annotation on the image reads, "Mateur, Tunisia 1943,
Capt. Jim Harmon – 94th
KIA, Gen. Carl Spaatz Northwest Air Force, Col. Ralph Garman – CO
1st Fgtr, Gen. Atkinson".
Note the two different spellings of Gen. Spatz' name. He
changed the spelling in 1938. Since he signed the Register as "Spatz", that's the spelling I use throughout this Web site. See his biography page at the
link above for details.
Below are four candid images of Louise Thaden. Please follow
the link for more information. The annotation for the group
of four photographs states they were taken November 26, 1939,
but the one immediately below may have been taken earlier
in the year.
Louise Thaden, Second from Left, November 26, 1939
Louise is second from left in this image. She appears to
be holding a box of flowers. Helen Richey appears at far right. The other three women are unidentified.
If you can indentify them, please let me know.
Louise Thaden, Left
Image, right, appears to be November, 1939 vintage. Louise is on the
shadow can be seen running up the front of her coat.
The other woman has been positively identified by her son as
Louise's sister, Alice McPhetridge Inge.
Louise Thaden, Center
Louise is in the center. Gentleman is identified
on the original photograph as Bill Graham; woman on the right
is noted as “Mrs.
sister. Correct spelling
Right, Louise Thaden on a sunny November day ca. 1939. The
location was unidentified for this image group.
Louise landed once at Tucson, on October 14, 1934, about
five years before this photograph was taken.
Roscoe Turner landed
four times at Tucson between 1928 and 1931. Please follow
the link to his own biography page on this Web site.
Roscoe Turner, Pittsburgh, PA May 4, 1934
At left, the caption for this image reads, "Roscoe
Turner and Wedell-Williams #57 ex #121 Pittsburgh 5/4/34".
This air racer was sponsored by Heinz 57 (painted on the
fuselage), which was a well-known Pittsburgh, PA company.
Turner is replete with his standard uniform (the coat was
blue and the wings were of his own design) and parachute.
The function of the small case is unknown. Does anyone know?
Roscoe Turner, National Air Races, September 2, 1939
Right, five years after the image above, the caption for
this photograph reads, “'The
Winner', Roscoe Turner after winning the Thompson, Cleveland
9/2/39". Information and further links describing his
air race successes are found at his bio link, above.
Al Wilson, 1930
Al Wilson signed the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register once
on September 28, 1930. He was flying this airplane.
Photograph, left, annotation reads, "Al Wilson with
replica Curtiss Pusher (NC3378), Glendale, CA 1930".
Wilson was killed flying the pusher in a mock dogfight
with an autogiro (NC10781) flown by John
Miller at the Cleveland Air
Races in 1932.
Steve Wittman, September 2, 1935
Steve Wittman of
Byron, WI landed twice at Tucson, on September 9 & 20,
1928. Both times he was solo in Pheasant H-10 NC5610. Both
landings were in conjunction with the National Air Races.
Please follow the link to his biography page on this site.
The caption on the original photograph states, "Steve J.
Wittman, Cleveland 9/2/35."
THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 10/31/07 REVISED: 10/10/08, 04/02/09, 11/04/09, 03/11/10, 01/25/14