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There is no biographical file for pilot Wickersham in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum (NASM), 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.


http://www.cafepress.com/content/global/img/spacer.gifThe Congress of Ghosts is an anniversary celebration for 2010.  It is an historical biography, that celebrates the 5th year online of www.dmairfield.org 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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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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Ernest Wickersham, Chief Cintotie of the San Carlos Apaches and Charlie Mayse with Wickersham's J-5 Waco in Safford, AZ (Source: ASL)
Ernest Wickersham, Chief Cintotie of the San Carlos Apaches and Charlie Mayse with Wickersham's J-5 Waco in Safford, AZ (Source: ASL)

Ernest Wickersham landed once at Tucson as pilot in command on March 16, 1926 at 6:40PM. He carried as his passenger Charles Mayse in an unidentified aircraft.

Based at Safford, AZ, he remained overnight departing the next day at noon. He also landed five times as a passenger with fellow Register pilot Charlie Mayse and once, with Carl Oelze on June 1, 1926, and on December 13, 1928, as a passenger with Dale Page.

At right, from the Arizona State Library (ASL) collection, are Ernest Wickersham, Chief Cintotie of the San Carlos Apaches and Charlie Mayse with Wickersham's J-5 Waco in Safford, AZ. Chances are good that the airplane Wickersham brought through Tucson was this one.

Ernest S. Wickersham was born April 15, 1887 and died June 15, 1968. He was mustered into the Army with Company B of the 1st Airzona Infantry in May, 1916. An article in the April 21, 1916 issue of the Graham Guardian (Safford, AZ) described his duties as a drill officer for the AZ National Guard. He was commissioned Captain May 24, 1918.

I believe he left the Army sometime in 1919. An article in the El Paso (TX) Herald of May 3, 1919 is headlined "Arizonans Given Banquet By Friends In El Paso." Captain Wickersham is cited in the article as giving a short talk at the banquet before departing by train the next morning for Arizona to return home after WWI. I do not know where or when he learned to fly.

There is one Web reference to Wickersham from 1943. He was a warehouseman at Poston Camp, one of the relocation centers for Japanese-Americans during WWII. He was a Congressional witness and his testimony was published in a ponderous report titled, "Investigation of un-American propaganda activities in the United States. Hearings before a Special Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, Seventy-fifth Congress, third session-Seventy-eighth Congress, second session, on H. Res. 282, to investigate (l) the extent, character, and objects of un-American propaganda activities in the United States, (2) the diffusion within the United States of subversive and un-American propaganda that is instigated from foreign countries or of a domestic origin and attacks the principle of the form of government as guaranteed by our Constitution, and (3) all other questions in relation thereto that would aid Congress in any necessary remedial legislation."

You'll note in the table of contents of the document that he is identified as Ernest "C." Wickersham, but in the text he is called to the witness stand as Ernest S. Wickersham. You may search for the relevant testimony at the link above, or download it at this link (PDF 207Kb) where I have abridged the report to focus on Wickersham's contributions to the proceedings. I've left the text as it was scanned and posted on the Web. There are some OCR artifacts, which are fairly easy to detect and correct.

Poston was divided into three camps which held 17,000 American citizens during WWII. The three Poston camps in aggregate comprised one of ten internment facilities. It is clear from Wickersham's testimony that the Japanese-Americans who were forced to be relocated to the camps were, "fret and fume with impotent rage," which they manifested in some creative ways. Please direct your browser to Register pilot Henry Ohye for another perspective.

I have no other information about Wickersham. If you can help, especially with photographs, please let me KNOW.



The Register


I'm looking for information and photographs of pilot Wickersham and his airplane to include on this page. If you have some you'd like to share, please click this FORM to contact me.



Military Aircraft of the Davis Monthan Register, 1925-1936 is available at the link. This book describes and illustrates with black & white photographs the majority of military aircraft that landed at the Davis-Monthan Airfield between 1925 and 1936. The book includes biographies of some of the pilots who flew the aircraft to Tucson as well as extensive listings of all the pilots and airplanes. Use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author. ISBN 978-0-9843074-2-5.


Art Goebel's Own Story by Art Goebel (edited by G.W. Hyatt) is written in language that expands for us his life as a Golden Age aviation entrepreneur, who used his aviation exploits to build a business around his passion.  Use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author. ISBN 978-0-9843074-1-8.


Winners' Viewpoints: The Great 1927 Trans-Pacific Dole Race is available at the link. Use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author. What was it like to fly from Oakland to Honolulu in a single-engine plane during August 1927? Was the 25,000 dollar prize worth it? Did the resulting fame balance the risk? For the first time ever, this book presents the pilot and navigator's stories written by them within days of their record-setting adventure. Pilot Art Goebel and navigator William V. Davis, Jr. take us with them on the Woolaroc, their orange and blue Travel Air monoplane (NX869) as they enter the hazardous world of Golden Age trans-oceanic air racing. ISBN 978-0-9843074-3-2.


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