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This information comes from the listings of Non-Prefixed and Non-Suffixed aircraft reviewed by me in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum (NASM), Washington, DC.

Click here to download a copy (139KB PDF) of the NASM record for this airplane.


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. ISBN 978-0-9843074-0-1.


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Registration Number NC7499

Downwind Approach

This airplane is a Curtiss-Robertson Robin , Model 1, S/N 10 (ATC# 40/68) manufactured September 4, 1928 by the Curtiss-Robertson Airplane Manufacturing Company, Anglum, MO.  It left the factory with a Curtiss OX-5 engine, S/N M-2729, of 90HP.  It was a three-place airplane weighing 2,217 pounds.

It sold initially on September 7, 1928 to the Harry Sperl Aero Corporation, Los Angeles, CA.  Sperl sold it on October 29, 1928 to Santa Maria Air Lines, Inc., of Santa Maria, CA.  The sale price was $3,900, with OX-5 engine S/N 2010 installed.  It operated with Santa Maria for about a year.  You can see an image on this site of this airplane at about the time it was owned by the Air Line.

NC7499 landed at Tucson three times between 1928 and 1931. The first visit was on September 9, 1928 piloted solo by W.G. Shelton, Jr. In all likelihood, from the date and from the homebase of the pilot (St. Louis, MO), this was the ferry flight from the manufacturer to the new owner, Harry Sperl. Shelton was westbound to Los Angeles. He stayed overnight at Tucson, departing on the 10th.

The second and third visits were in August-September 1931. Pilots William Hampton and S. Saiten arrived carrying single passengers. Hampton was eastbound; Saiten recorded neither the date of his visit nor his itinerary.

NC7499 sold on October 30, 1929 to Hancock Foundation College of Aeronautics, Santa Maria, CA.  It had accumulated 253 hours and 42 minutes of flight time.  On July 9, 1930 it suffered an accident with unspecified damages.  It was repaired and returned to service with OX-5 engine S/N 4863 on December 18, 1930.

On May 19, 1931 the airplane sold to Virgil G. Wilkinson of El Segundo, CA.  Wilkinson flew it for over two years and accumulated 704 hours and 40 minutes of flight time up to July 8, 1933.  Over the next six years it passed through eight more owners and had six engine changes.  It had repairs made to “stabilizer spars” on March 23, 1937.  It had 10” Aircraft Products Corp. wheels installed on March 29, 1938.  The eight owners tallied over 1,100 flight hours.  None of them signed the Davis-Monthan Register, either with or without NC7499. However, Mr. Wilkinson was listed as "V.G. Wilkinson" as passenger with pilot Hampton.

Carl L. Washburn, Jr., Ca. 1949-50 (Source: Washburn)
George L. Washburn, Jr., Ca. 1949-50 (Source: Washburn)

The final owner was Carl L. Washburn of Graham, TX.  He purchased the airplane on December 19, 1939.  He had a student permit and was flying his new airplane home when he suffered an accident. 

At his home airport, the NASM report states, he, “Came in down wind to drag field, when motor cut out.  Touched down, attempted to go on, overshot airport, and settled into a garage near airport.  Garage demolished.  Landing gear washed out, motor mount broken, prop bent, both safety belts broken, instrument panel bent.” Washburn suffered a broken collar bone and a broken right arm. His son, as passenger, suffered minor head injuries. 

At left, contributed by his cousin Rod Washburn, is a photograph of Carl L. Washburn, Jr., the passenger in the plane that hit the garage in Graham, TX and received a head injury. He was about 15 at the time of the crash.

Contributor Washburn says about his cousin, "In WWII he was a B-17 pilot who flew over 20 missions with the 391st Bomb Group out of Framlingham, England.  This photo was taken with his P80 Shooting Star just prior to Korea."

C.L. Washburn, Jr. was killed in Korea flying ground cover.




UPLOADED: 07/18/07 REVISED: 08/29/08, 02/25/10

The Register

I'm looking for photographs of this airplane to include on this page. If you have one or more you'd like to share, please use this FORM to contact me.

I'm also looking for information on pilots Shelton and Saiten, as well as passenger Wilkinson.

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