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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.


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Registration Number NC8266

Sheriff’s Foreclosure

This aircraft is an Alexander Eaglerock A-1/A-3, S/N 774 (ATC# 57/59). It was manufactured June, 1929 by the Alexander Aircraft Company, Colorado Springs, CO. It came from the factory with a 150 HP Hispano-Suiza A engine S/N 3606. It weighed 2,618 pounds as a three-place airplane.

It sold on July 15, 1929 to Aero Corporation of California, Los Angeles, CA (Jack Frye, President; Paul Richter, Jr., Treasurer). Aero was an Eaglerock distributor on the west coast. Aero sold it on August 3, 1929 to Frank Free, Scenic Airways, Inc., Phoenix, AZ, who took delivery at Colorado Springs, CO.

Runway 35 Bisbee, AZ

Now comes NC8266 to Tucson on August 13, 1929 piloted solo by Frank Free. He was southbound from Phoenix, stayed overnight in Tucson, and left for Bisbee, AZ the next morning at 10:00 AM.

Photo, right, taken by your Webmaster as I approached runway 35 at Bisbee on a clear day in September, 2002. Still a small airport (not much going on that afternoon, but with friendly folks at the FBO). Mining operations visible on mountain top left.

The Great Depression temporarily took its toll on Free. The airplane was sold at a sheriff’s sale in a foreclosure judgment (bid $2,028.77) on February 24, 1931 to Valley Bank & Trust Co., Phoenix, AZ. Valley Bank sold it on March 9, 1931 to George T. Peter of Phoenix, who then sold it to Free again. This time Free’s address was given as Mines Field, Inglewood, CA. The airplane, however, remained stored at Sky Harbor Airport, Phoenix.

Over the next three years Frank Free filed numerous address changes with the government. He moved around from California to “Clark Cadillac Co.” in Portland, OR, “Nixon Nitration Works”, Nixon, NJ, and “Hotel Anglo-Americano”, Managua, Nicaragua. It is not clear whether the airplane went with him, but, according to the NASM record, it had accumulated 321:15 flight hours as of December 28, 1932.

A June 29, 1933 letter from Inspector Pettis states, “this plane in Nicaragua.” Another letter to Free on January 16, 1934 states that one of his airplanes, “was involved in accident at Managua, Nicaragua 10/18/33, 3 fatalities.” Pettis asked for a report. There was no reply to repeated inquiries and all mail to various addresses was returned “unclaimed.” I do not know if Free was among the fatalities. The registration was cancelled January 1, 1934. No further information.


UPLOADED: 07/28/05 REVISED: 7/29/05

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.

---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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