Cincinnati Aviation Heritage Society & Museum

Preserving aviation's past for future generations.

Lunken Airport was once home to:

Aeronca Aircraft Company

American Airways

The Aviation Corporation (AVCO)

The 73rd Troop Carrier Squadron

Edmund P. Lunken's Fokker DR VII & SE5A by: Charlie Pyles

Here's a little information about the above two hangars that some are sure to disagree with. First. These two hangars were not brought from France. They were not Lafayette Escadrille Hangars as is widely believed. The story is widely believed because the rumor was started by E. P. Lunken according to his son E.B. Lunken and is corroborrated by interviews I personally conducted with respected historian Hans Dam.

These hangars were first built at Dayton, Ohio at McCook field. McCook Field was named after a family of soldiers killed in WWI. McCook was where the Army Air Service carried out a lot of experimental work in the early days and these two hangars were built there. When the AAS outgrew McCook, they relocated to Wright Field which is now the Air Force Museum. The hangars were taken down and sold at auction.

It's not clear right now who bought them (I'll find out), but they were moved to Grisard Field here in Cincinnati where one of them was erected and the other left dismantled. The AAS decided  Grisard was too small and moved the hangars to Lunken. The story I have is that the hangars were built on concrete pads which sat on very moist soil and the hangars were always humid causing aircraft stored inside of them to corrode. As time passed, the metal sides of the hangars also started to corrode and were soon rusted away. That's why you see the cinder block on the sides of these two hangars in today.

Here's another little know fact just for your entertainment: One of the very first Air Mail flights ever was from Coney Island to California, Ohio in 1912.


All American's Airmail Pick-Up West Terminus was at Cincinnati Lunken

-Charlie Pyles-

The Metal Aircraft Company

Found! The last surviving Flamingo in Venezuela. This is the actual airplane in which Jimmy Angel discovered Angel Falls

The Embry Riddle Aeronautical Co. Inc.

These other companies also have a history with our airport: 

In July 1929 Mason & Dixon Air Lines started Passenger service between Detroit and Cincinnati using a Metal Aircraft Flamingo.  Date of last service was January 1931. M & D had intended to extend services to Atlanta and possibly Jacksonville down as far as Miami, Florida.  It never happened.

January 30, 1929 two visiting airplanes arrived illustrating the versatility of airplanes in advertising. The first was the Lockheed Vega monoplane "True Story" flown by Okey Bevins, formerly a pilot with the Embry-Riddle Company, who was accompanied by his new bride, Martha Croninger Bevins. She  was the first woman advanced student of the Embry-Riddle Flying School. The "True Story" was owned by McFadden publications.

The other visitor was  "Voice From the Sky", a Fokker Tri-Motor which flew over populated areas with a loudspeaker and an announcer on board extolling the virtues of denatured alcohol as an anti-freeze for automobiles.

On November 1, 1930, Main Flying Service began Pittsburgh-Cincinnati Service with a Ryan.  This service ended October 1, 1931.

Ogden

(Henry H & Perry V) Ogden Aeronautical Corp, 1119 S Market St, Inglewood CA. 1928: Recapitalized and moved to Cincinnati OH. 1933: Ended operations. Are there surviving examples of this airplane? Information is needed. Contact us.

Osprey PB (aka Pirate) 1930 with three 95hp Menasco B-4. TAG (Formerly Taxi Air Group, a subsidiary of Miller Oil Company) Airlines started service on October 1, 1958 with de Havilland Dove, Heron and Piper Aztec type aircraft.

April 8, 1928: The first plane completed in Cincinnati by International Aircraft Corp. is displayed at Watson Field. What happened to it?

April 14, 1941: Delta Air Lines begins air transportation service at Lunken Airport, linking Cincinnati to South American countries.  

Air Cat-1925

Does anyone have photos of an Air Cat?

Rearwin

1928: R A (Rae Andrew) Rearwin Co, Salina KS. 1929: Rearwin Airplanes Inc, Kansas City KS. 1937: Acquired LeBlond Aircraft Co (Cincinnati OH), renamed as Ken-Royce motors. 1939: Rearwin Aircraft & Engines Inc. 1943: Acquired by Commonwealth Aircraft.

LeBlond LeBlond Engines Inc, Cincinnati OH. LeBlond Aircraft Engine Corp.  

Ken-Royce (LeBlond) LeBlond Engines Inc, Cincinnati OH

Detroit, Detroit-Rickenbacker Detroit Aircraft Enginering Corp (Glenn D Angle & Edward V Rickenbacker), Detroit MI. 1928: Sold to LeBlond Co, Cincinnati.  

Dietz

(Conrad) Dietz Laboratories, Cincinnati OH. 1925: Dietz Aeroplane Co, 815 Herman Ave, Dayton OH. 1928: General Aircraft Corp, Cincinnati.

1928 = 3 Place; 90hp Curtiss OX-5. 2p cabin between the cantilever wings. POP: 1 built, but apparently never flown [X5055]. Concept was studied, and modified plans were drawn in 1929 showing a 110hp Dayton Bear installation, by Aeronca, who assigned it company model designation C-4. It never went past the evaluation stage.

Halpin

1928: (Thomas E) Halpin Development Co, Lunken Airport, Cincinnati OH. Reorganized as Metal Aircraft Corp.

Metal Aircraft Flamingo 1928 = 6 Place; 410hp P&W Wasp; Speed 135mph. Later Models had P & W Hornet Engine with 525hp which enabled it to go 140mph. Wingspan: 48'0" length: 30'0" load: 2050# v: 138/115/45 range: 1000. T E Halpin (formerly with Stout Aircraft). SEE Flamingo for more information. 

Gyropter - American Gyropter Co, Cincinnati OH.

1928: A wedding of the Cierva autogyro design with that of a helicopter would, ideally, produce a best-of-both-worlds machine, but what came of this grand plan is unknown. Charles W Lay. 

General, GAC

General Aircraft Corp (Conrad & John W Dietz), Cincinnati OH.

Nighthawk 1928; 90hp Curtiss OX-5; span: (upper) 36'0" (lower) 26'0" v: 120/102/35-40; a.k.a. Dietz Nighthawk. Displayed at a 1928 exhibition, but only as a wind-tunnel scale model, so perhaps that was as big as this one ever got. No record of construction of this design that looked much like a British Hawker Fury.

International

1927: International Aircraft Corp organized from Catron & Fisk, Santa Monica CA; 1927: Spring and Pacific Sts, Long Beach CA. 1928: Reorganized as Ancor, 507 Pearl St, Cincinnati, OH. 1929: Acquired by Crosley Motor Car Co.

International CF-10 Dole racer (Oakland Tribune Photo)

International F-17

Morrison

(Sylvanus S) Morrison Automatic Flying Machine Mfg. Co. Cincinnati OH. We're looking for more Morrison Photos.