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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, while supplies last.

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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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


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, while supplies last.


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.  Available as a free download at the link.



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There are two visits to Tucson that are cited as being from Ames, IA. Both visits were by Wilford Gerbracht, flying Travel Air NC1076. The Ames Historical Society link in the right sidebar describes the origins of the airfield, the Gerbracht business at the airfield, and provides excellent images of the airfield surrounds during its early days.

Below, from the D.O.C. book cited in the left sidebar, is a description of the airfield from 1937. This book is the functional equivalent of the contemporary Airport and Facilities Directory published today by the FAA.

Department of Commerce Description of the Airfield, 1937
Department of Commerce Description of the Airfield, 1937

Below, an aerial photograph of the airfield from 1939. This image, and its Google Earth equivalent, second below, are provided to us by Alan Spohnheimer (cited, right sidebar). As stated above, the trees and structures in the SW corner do preclude landing there.

Gerbracht Airfield, 1939 (Source: Spohnheimer)
Gerbracht Airfield, 1939

Mr. Spohnheimer says of these images, "Attached are two photos of land where the Gerbracht airfield was located south of Ames just east of Highway 69. The smaller image is from 1939, after it was bought out and operated a while by someone else. North is at top of both images." 

Google Earth Image of Gerbracht Airfield, 2009 (Source: Spohnheimer)
Google Earth Image of Gerbracht Airfield, 2009

Above, you can see Highway 69 identified at left. The row of five buildings running north to south seems to align with the 1939 N-S runway, and Topaz Ct. at upper right is aligned with the old E-W runway. Mr. Spohnheimer states, "The state forest nursery is visible at the top of both shots.  The squares of the nursery in each photo can help identify the correct orientation of the older photo.  ... the west end of Crystal Street (coming from highway 69) does show."

Today, if you travel about a half mile due east from this location, you will be on the property of the contemporary Ames Municipal Airport (KAMW).


THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 02/24/09 REVISED: 04/24/18

The Register

Our thanks to Alan Spohnheimer of the Ames Historical Society for sharing photos and information about the locations of the Gerbracht fields.


Winners' Viewpoints: The Great 1927 Trans-Pacific Dole Race is available at the link. 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.


Clover Field: The First Century of Aviation in the Golden State. With the 100th anniversary in 2017 of the use of Clover Field as a place to land aircraft in Santa Monica, this book celebrates that use by exploring some of the people and aircraft that made the airport great.



U.S. Department of Commerce. Bureau of Air Commerce. 1937. Descriptions of Airports and Landing Fields in the United States. U.S. Government Printing Office. 222 pp. This book is shared with us by Tim Kalina.

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