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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.


The 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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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.


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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This airplane landed at Tucson September 26, 1928 at 2PM. The pilot was Buddy Jones based in St. Louis, MO. He carried a single passenger,Russell Kilgore. The were eastbound from San Diego, CA to St. Louis.

Below are photographs of NC7209 from the San Diego Air & Space Museum (SDAM) Flickr stream. The airplane appears to be taxiing.

Ryan NC7209, 1928 (Source: SDAM)

A second image is below. The photo caption at the site states, "B-1 on ground. Belonged to Wisconin Dells resort." The livery on the fuselage advertises Wisconsin Dells. The location is unknown.

NC7209, 1928 (Source: SDAM)

The airplane is of interest because the FAA record for it suggests it still exists. It was registered to James Stewart, the actor, of Beverly Hills, CA. His registration was cancelled November 21, 2017, a full 20-years after his passing.

According to Skyways magazine (No. 62, p.39, April 2002), NC7209 was used by Paul Mantz to fabricate Jimmie Stewart's reproduction of the Spirit of St. Louis for the movie of the same name. Another source (Aeroplane Monthly, January 7, 2022) implies as follows that 7209 was modified for filming, but not as a real replica of the original Spirit.

"During the shooting of Spirit of St Louis Stewart met Charles Lindbergh, who acted as an adviser for the film. Stewart also co-owned a genuine Ryan Brougham of the same ilk as the Spirit which was used, with others, for aerial sequences in the film. The aircraft, a rebuilt B-1 registered NC7209, had been found languishing in a Colorado shed, having previously been used for ferrying fishermen to the Rockies. It had not flown for three years. The Ryan was extensively modified for filming, the cockpit seating was changed and one side of the cabin was glazed, unlike the original, which was windowless."

While it's safe to say that 7209 flew during the 1957 filming of "The Spirit of St. Louis," it might have been as a "Spirit-in-profile," as it appears from this source that only one side of the cockpit was windowless.

Further to the confusion is the following quote from Wikipedia. It suggests that each of the three mockups of the Spirit were fully symmetric replicas.

"To accurately depict the transatlantic flight, three replicas, at a cost of $1.3 million (equal to $14.2 million today), were made of the Spirit of St. Louis for the various filming units stateside, in Europe and in the studio. Stewart purchased a similar Ryan Brougham that was modified under Lindbergh's supervision. In 1959, Stewart donated the aircraft [NC7209] to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. The second replica was donated to the San Diego Aerospace Museum but was destroyed in 1978 when a fire gutted the Electric Building in Balboa Park that housed the museum. The third replica is displayed in the Missouri History Museum in St. Louis."

The ownership of NC7209 by the Henry Ford Museum is somewhat clarifiying. The Museum states the following on its Web site.

"Warner Bros. built this airplane for its 1957 movie The Spirit of St. Louis. The film's star, Jimmy Stewart, donated it to The Henry Ford in 1959. The replica is faithful to Charles Lindbergh's original with two exceptions. The replica's wingspan is shorter, and its cabin has two seats. On Lindbergh's plane, large fuel tanks left room for only one seat."

The good news is that this airplane still exists and enjoys museum-level care. None of this explains why its registration remained in Stewart's name until it was cancelled on November 21, 2017. If you have insight, please let me KNOW.



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.


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