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Your copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register with all the pilots' signatures and helpful cross-references to pilots and their aircraft is available at the link. Or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author, while supplies last.

---o0o--- Congress of Ghosts is an anniversary celebration for 2010.  It is an historical biography, that celebrates the 5th year online of and the 10th year of effort on the project dedicated to analyze and exhibit the history embodied in the Register of the Davis-Monthan Airfield, Tucson, AZ. This book includes over thirty people, aircraft and events that swirled through Tucson between 1925 and 1936. It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders. Order your copy at the link.


Military Aircraft of the Davis Monthan Register, 1925-1936 is available at the link. This book describes and illustrates with black & white photographs the majority of military aircraft that landed at the Davis-Monthan Airfield between 1925 and 1936. The book includes biographies of some of the pilots who flew the aircraft to Tucson as well as extensive listings of all the pilots and airplanes. Use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author, while supplies last.


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BOEING FB-1 A-6885

I don't have a lot of information about this airplane. Joe Baugher's site identifies it as one of a series of Bureau numbers A-6884 through A-6893. It was probably serial number 739. It was a Boeing FB-1, Model 15. It was signed in the Davis-Monthan Register once, on Thursday, August 22, 1929 at 10:00AM. It was flown solo by Lester J. Holoubeck. He remained on the ground at Tucson for three hours, departing at 1PM. Below, from the National Archives via Bob Woodling, is a rear port quarter image of a-6885.

Boeing FB-1 Model 15 A-6885, Location & Date Unknown (Source: National Archives)
Boeing FB-1 Model 15 A-6885, Location & Date Unknown  (Source: National Archives)

Based at Washington, DC, he arrived at Tucson from Yuma, AZ and stated his destination that day as El Paso, TX. Given that he probably began his flight from the west coast, El Paso would be a long-day's flight for such an aircraft. He noted in the Remarks that he represented the "Dept of Commerce." Holoubeck became later the chief test pilot for Lockheed Aircraft Company.

The following information appeared on a blog on November 9, 2017 at the link. I cite the text in the box, because I am not sure how long the information will remain on the blog. Thanks to a site visitor for pointing out the link.

In the summer of 1929, 3 Boeing FB-1's (A-6885, A-6890, A-6891) were transferred from the Navy to the Department of Commerce. 3 Department of Commerce Pilots were assigned to Pilot these aircraft from San Diego to Washington via Yuma, Davis-Monthan, and El Paso. 

The delivery was late August 1929 as a flight of 3

The aircraft were assigned as follows

A-6885 Lester J. 'Holly' Holoubek - The J. I cannot find but maybe Joseph after his father (1901 to 1961) [sic]

A-6890 Marshall Sutherland Boggs (1894 to KIFA 1933)

A-6891 Capt. Henry Bishop Pentland (1895 Died 1932)

They arrived Davis-Monthan, Arizona August 22 1929 and stayed the night

I assume they overnighted at El Paso on August 23rd, 1929 however, on August 24th 1929, an accident occurred which resulted in the loss of A-6885 [only Boggs remained overnight at Tucson].

Arizona Daily Star from Tucson, Arizona · Page 2 August 25, 1929

"FLIER'S LIFE SAVED IN PARACHUTE JUMP DALLAS, Texas, Aug. 24.- L.J. Holoubek, 31, of Los Angeles, department, of commerce aeronautics engineering inspector, saved his life today by a parachute jump when his plane went into a spin and crashed near here. Though somewhat nervous and depressed because the machine had been smashed, Holoubek, was unhurt. He found his induction into the Caterpillar Club, the ranks of those who have escaped death the parachute, a shaky affair "that was my first 'chute jump and I'll tell the world it isn't pleasant." he declared. The machine was one of the small fast pursuit ships turned over to the department of commerce by the navy flying service Holoubek with Capt. H B Pentland, department of Commerce aeronautics inspector for Love Field here, and M S. Boggs of arrived in the three planes from El Paso, enroute from San Diego, Calif to Washington Holoubek's craft, he said, gave him trouble since leaving El Paso."

It appears that Holoubeck and A-6885 were part of a flight of three FB-1s that were transferred from the Navy to the Department of Commerce. According to the newspaper article, Holoubeck crashed his aircraft two days after his visit at Tucson. Holoubeck survived this crash, because he flew West in 1961.


THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 11/13/17 REVISED: 11/17/17

The Register

I'm looking for information and photographs of this airplane to include on this page. If you have some you'd like to share, please click this FORM to contact me.


Thanks to Guest Editor Bob Woodling for help researching this page.



Art Goebel's Own Story by Art Goebel (edited by G.W. Hyatt) is written in language that expands for us his life as a Golden Age aviation entrepreneur, who used his aviation exploits to build a business around his passion.  Available as a free download at the link.


Winners' Viewpoints: The Great 1927 Trans-Pacific Dole Race is available at the link. What was it like to fly from Oakland to Honolulu in a single-engine plane during August 1927? Was the 25,000 dollar prize worth it? Did the resulting fame balance the risk? For the first time ever, this book presents the pilot and navigator's stories written by them within days of their record-setting adventure. Pilot Art Goebel and navigator William V. Davis, Jr. take us with them on the Woolaroc, their orange and blue Travel Air monoplane (NX869) as they enter the hazardous world of Golden Age trans-oceanic air racing.


Clover Field: The First Century of Aviation in the Golden State. With the 100th anniversary in 2017 of the use of Clover Field as a place to land aircraft in Santa Monica, this book celebrates that use by exploring some of the people and aircraft that made the airport great.


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