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This information comes from the biographical file for pilot Doty, CD-617000-01, reviewed by me in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum, Washington, DC.

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Asian Duty and Pioneer U.S. Commercial Transport Pilot

Pilot David Ellis Doty was born November 15, 1893 in Utah.  He first became interested in aviation in 1914, when, in Vancouver, WA he persuaded a local pilot to let him wash his aircraft once a week.  He learned to fly in the military (soloed March, 1918 at Park Field, TN).  In April 1919, he was with the U.S. Army in the Philippines, where he was detailed to construct what is now Clark Field, near Manila.

David Doty, ca. 1931

He resigned from the U.S. Army in 1920, became an instructor for the Philippine government (under the auspices of Curtiss-Wright) and later for the Portuguese and Chinese governments.  He was the head of the Portuguese Air Service at Macao, and in 1922 and 1923 was connected with the Cantonese government as an instructor.

Back in the U.S. in 1923 he barnstormed until, in 1926, he became a reserve air mail pilot at Concord near San Francisco.  Later he ran a flying school at Oakland, CA.  In September 1928 he went to work with Western Air Express as pilot on the Los Angeles-Salt Lake and Los Angeles-San Francisco runs.  He had accumulated 4,650 flight hours by November 1, 1930.

He had short biographies published in “The Pilot” magazine of May 1931 (image), in their “Who’s Who” column, as well as the Blue Book of Aviation, 1932.

On October 15, 1930 he became one of the four original pilots on the Western Division of American Airlines.  It was probably during his tenure with American that Doty landed at Tucson flying Douglas Sleeper Transport (DST-144) c/n 1549, NC16007.  He did not cite the date of his landing, but, based on dates entered nearby by other signers of the Register, he visited sometime between September 1 and 6, 1936.  He carried two passengers, Johnnie Lee McKinney and Dorothy Weaver (anyone know who these passengers were?).    He had flown over 11,000 hours as of 1936.

Dossier 2.1.82


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