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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.

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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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


Motion picture footage of a restored Boeing 40 is available here. This seven-minute film is worth viewing, as this airplane, NC5339, is the only example flying.



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Boeing 40-B-4 NC842M, Date & Location Unknown
Boeing 40-B-4 NC842M, Date & Location Unknown

Boeing Model 40-B-4 NC842M


This airplane is a Boeing Model 40-B-4 (S/N 1168; ATC #183), manufactured in January 1930 by the Boeing Airplane Company, Seattle, WA.  It left the factory with a Pratt & Whitney Hornet engine (S/N 325) of 525 HP. It was a large, five-place airplane, weighing 6,075 pounds.  The pilot sat in an open cockpit. It had a radio installed. A left profile photograph of NC842M is at the link.

NC842M, much like its sister ship NC397E was used by the Boeing Company as a demonstrator by none other than Erik Nelson. Nelson was pilot of the Douglas World Cruiser, Chicago. He and his team of other pilots and aircraft won the Mackay Trophy for the very first around-the-world flight, April 6th to September 28, 1924.  After resigning from the military, Nelson joined Boeing as a corporate officer.

NC842M was first test-flown by company pilot L.R. Tower.  It was ferried from Boeing Field, Seattle “south” by Erik Nelson on February 3, 1930.  It visits Tucson on May 8, 1931 flown solo by Nelson.  He is eastbound from San Diego, CA (Rockwell Field) to El Paso, TX.

The airplane sold on August 31, 1931 to United Air Lines, Chicago, IL. It flew for United just over a year.  On December 13, 1932, flying from Chicago to Omaha, NB, it suffered an accident at McClelland, IA about 8 miles east of Council Bluffs.  The pilot, E.B. Jeppesen (signed our Register in 1929), suffered minor injuries.  Carburetor ice formed forcing the airplane down. The plane turned over, caught fire and was destroyed.  Final disposition given tersely on the record: “crashed 12/32”.


Huntington, PA Daily News, December 13, 1932 (Source: Stockmyer)
Huntington, PA Daily News, December 13, 1932

National and local news articles from December, 1932 documented the crash of this airplane. These are shared with us by site visitor Charles Stockmyer in July, 2009.

At right, as happens many times in Golden Age reportage, pilot Jeppesen's name is misspelled.

Below, his initials are correct.

Oelwein, IA Daily Register, December 14, 1932 (Source: Stockmyer)
Oelwein, IA Daily Register, December 14, 1932

The biography of Jeppesen cited in the REFERENCES does not mention this particular flight, although the mail routes from Chicago westward are cited, as are other Boeing model 40's flown by Jeppesen. However, on page 485 of his biography, dated December 16, 1932, is mentioned a telegram to his mother. It is quoted in part, "Everything all right, am back flying...."

Salt Lake City Tribune, December 14, 1932 (Source: Stockmyer)
Salt Lake City Tribune, December 14, 1932


THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 03/28/06 REVISED: 10/13/07, 07/31/08, 08/01/09, 09/30/12

The Register
I'm looking for additional 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.
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