During the period of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register, Oakland was a large airfield south of Oakland and east of San Francisco. It was an advanced airfield, with five hangars, a radio range beacon, weather reporting and traveler amenities (hotel, etc.) available at the field.
In 1927, the airfield was laid out as in the following schematic drawing dated August 1927. I exhibited this schematic lengthwise for better readability.
Oakland Municipal Airport, August 1927 (Source: Webmaster)
Oakland Municipal Airport, Ca. 1931 (Source: Webmaster)
A short film shows the Oakland Airport operation circa 1928. Note the Boeing Model 40 mail planes, and the large Western Air Express Fokker F-10 trimotor. This is a silent film. Please let me KNOW if this YouTube link becomes inoperative.
At left, from this REFERENCE, page 54, a description of Oakland, ca. 1931. The entire field was available for landing and departing traffic. There were no formal runways except one, a long one on the south side of the field used for special flights (excessive loads). All this in 1931.
Oakland would be famous in spite of it being the departure point for two historic Golden Age flights. The first was the August, 1927 trans-Pacific Dole Race. That race was won by Register pilot Art Goebel and his navigator, William V. Davis, Jr. Two books about these by your Webmaster are available for your enjoyment. They are listed in the left sidebar.
The second flight was the unsuccessful around-the-world attempts by Amelia Earhart in her Lockheed 10A NR16040 (not a Register airplane). The first attempt was in March, 1937, which was terminated by a ground loop accident in Hawaii. Her second departure from Oakland was in May, 1937, and ended with her disappearance somewhere in the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937. There is a movie on dmairfield.org that shows Earhart and her Lockheed on the ground at Oakland. The probablility is high that she appears in this film in March or May of '37.
Interestingly, the film was shot by one of the Oakland Municipal Airport's business owners. West E. Moreau operated out of hangar 4 at the field. Please direct your browser to his link to learn about this productive Golden Age aviation entrepreneur.
Oakland Municipal Airport, Ca. 1933 (Source: Webmaster)
At right, from this REFERENCE, page 24, an aerial view of the northern California Oakland Municipal Airport, ca. 1933.
In 1933, Oakland Municipal was rated A-1-A by the Department
of Commerce. At the field there was a radio range beacon station,
Department of Commerce Aeronautics Branch Headquarters, U.S.
naval Reserve Base aviation unit and radio telephone.
It was located six miles south of Oakland and seven miles
east of San Francisco. It was irregular in shape and situated
on San Francisco Bay (see photo). An advance from 1931, above, the airfield now had two gravel and earth
runways, 7,050 ft. E/W and 3,500 ft. N/S. It was five feet
above sea level. It had facilities for landing seaplanes north
of hangar No. 5. There was no landing or flood light charge.
Day markings at the airport included the standard circle, "OAKLAND"
painted on hangar No. 1 and on the road east of the field.
A north indicator arrow was painted on hangar No. 2. For night
operations, it had boundary and flood lights, and a rotating
beacon with green code flashing "OK".
For communications it had telephone and two-way radio. Boeing
Air Transport, Inc. maintained radio station "KFO"
and the Department of Commerce maintained radio station "KCV".
Weather reports were available on the field.
A modern hotel and restaurant were still at the field. Taxi rate
to the city was 15 cents and buses ran every forty minutes
beginning at 8:06 AM. Fuel, oil and hangars were available,
as was a 24-hour licensed repair depot with licensed mechanics.
Below, from Popular Aviation (PA) magazine, June, 1935, is a view of the airport similar to the lableled one, above. Note, however, the new geometry of the channel at center right, which allowed for a seaplane launch. There are two aircraft aloft in this photograph.
Oakland Airport, Popular Aviation, June, 1935 (Source: PA)
Operators on the field included United Air Lines and eight
flight schools: D.W. Wright's aerial school, W.H. Fillmore's aerial school, Monarch Air
Service, Moreau Flying Service, Vowles Flying Service, Boeing
School of Aeronautics and Derby Flying Club. Service, parts
and accessories were available from Pacific Aeromotive Corp.,
Western Aviation Supply Co. and Spillane & Co.
Below, from this REFERENCE, page 22, a description of the airfield from 1937.
Oakland Municipal Airport, Ca. 1937 (Source: Webmaster)
Below, from Google Earth, a 2010 view of the Metropolitan Oakland International Airport. The contemporary airport is built on the same property as the original. Note the latitude and longitude values at center and compare with the values in the description above. San Francisco Bay is in the lower left corner.
Metropolitan Oakland International Airport, 2010 (Source: Google Earth)
If you go to Google Earth and explore some of the street names in the airport neighborhood, you'll find Maitland Drive, Earhart Road, Cessna Street, Doolittle Drive and Hegenberger Road, Loop and Place. All named after Register pilots for their aviation activities at Oakland.
UPLOADED: 06/05 REVISED: 12/20/10, 12/17/11, 06/29/14, 12/06/19