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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, Washington, DC.


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.


Bobbi's book, "Just Plane Crazy" by Donna Veca & Skip Mazzio, 1987. Aviation Book Company, Glendale, CA ISBN 0-940997-01-0, is a good read with lots of news clippings and photos. Her website is a great browse.


An image similar to the one at right can be found on p. 154 of Juptner, volume 3. Although the images look exactly the same, the Juptner image has a "C" in front of the 8187 on the rudder.

Refer to:

Juptner, Joseph. 1962-1981. U.S. Civil Aircraft. Volumes 1-9. Aero Publishers, Inc. Fallbrook, CA.

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Registration Number NC8187

Plane Vanilla

This aircraft is a Swallow TP-W, S/N 202 (ATC 2253), manufactured 9/23/29 by Swallow Airplane Co., Wichita, KS. It was powered by a Warner Scarab 110 HP engine, S/N 425. As a two-place aircraft, it weighed 1,739 pounds. It landed twice at Tucson. It sold on 10/2/30 to Robert Grayson Crooks, Winslow, AZ, who was the sole owner of record.

Swallow Model TP, NC8187, Location Unknown (Source: Redden via Woods)
Swallow NC8187

It landed first at Tucson on 5/15/1930 piloted by Nick Galloway carrying an unidentified passenger. Based in Santa Monica, CA, they were westbound from Lordsburg, NM to Yuma, AZ. Pilot Galloway was a friend of Bobbi Trout, as indicated on page 29 of the reference at left.

The second landing of NC8187 at Tucson was between 10/14 and 10/17/30 piloted by George Willis Tyson. He was carrying passenger Barclay Brandingham, but they did not specify their homebase, where they came from or where they were going.

The airplane suffered an accident on 12/24/30. No record of damage. Pilot N.S. Thompson had no license. The registration was cancelled on 1/22/31, although owner Crooks continued to send mailing address updates through 1933. One could conclude the airplane was damaged on 12/24/30 and Crooks chose not to repair it. In the record Crooks was reported deceased as of 3/25/33.


Oakland Tribune March 10, 1933
Oakland Tribune March 10, 1933

Site visitor C. Crier provides the news article at right from the Oakland Tribune of March 10, 1933.

She provides the following information about Robert Crooks, the sole owner of NC8187. "My mother's cousin Robert Grayson Crooks was killed when his plane crashed while running rum from Mexico."

And, further, "He was born 1902/3 in Colorado to Nancy O. (Conaway) and James Elsworth Crooks. His funeral services were held at 10:00 a.m. Monday Mar 13, 1933 at Pierce Bros. Chapel In L.A. according to the LA Times or Examiner Vital Records."

The airplane he crashed was not NC8187. Had Crooks lived another nine months, he wouldn't have had to run rum, as Prohibition was repealed in December 1933.


UPLOADED: 07/28/05 REVISED: 01/26/07, 10/25/07

The Register
Gary Redden of Lincoln, NB provided this great image of NC8187, via Jessie Woods. Thanks to Gary and Jessie!

---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, or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author.  ISBN 978-0-9843074-4-9.


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