Born about 1915 at Knik, moved to Anchorage 1919. Wesley Dunkle taught him to fly. Operated Aho Flying Service out of Anchorage.
While ferrying a Stinson through Canada in 1938, died in crash in Yukon Territory.
HARRY O. AREND Harry O. Arend (1903-1966)
was in private practice in Fairbanks. He served as District Attorney in Fairbanks from 1937-1944, as U.S. district attorney in
the 4th Judicial Division in Fairbanks from1944-1949. He also served as a trial attorney with the U.S. Justice Department in the anti-trust
division, as Superior Court Judge and as an Alaska Supreme Court Justice. He is buried in Angelus Memorial Cemetery, Anchorage.
VIVIAN AYERST Vivian Ayerst (1908-2002)
came to Alaska in the 1930's as part of a string trio on the Alaska Steamship line between Seward and Seattle. She played the violin in four symphony orchestras: Tacoma, Olympia, Phoenix and Anchorage. For over 30 years she was in the first violin section of the Anchorage Symphony, much of that time serving as Concert Mistress. During her later years she played with the Borealis String Quartet in the Anchorage area. She was a member of the Anchorage Baha`i Center. She typed the entire manuscript for High Endeavors before the days of computers. Buried in Angelus Memorial Park, Anchorage.
Born about 1902 in Ohio. Learned to fly in 1920 as a U.S. Navy recruit at the Great Lakes Training Center in Illinois. Arrived in Alaska in 1929. Was part of Carl Ben Eielson's team in Fairbanks transporting personnel & a fortune in furs from the merchant ship Nanuck that was stranded in the ice of the coast of Siberia. He flew in the search for the Eielson wreck after his fatal crash in the winter of 1929/30. Barney & Linious "Mac" McGee purchased a three-seat Stinson in 1931 & founded Barnhill & McGee Airways which became McGee Airways after they dissolved their partnership in about 1932. Died in automobile accident near Spokane, WA in the late 1950's.
Born August 22, 1903 Lawrence County, Colorado, came to Alaska 1932. Varied career from southeastern Alaska to the Interior to the Yukon. Barr Air Transport was his one-man, one-plane company. Best known on Gillam's mail run from Fairbanks to Bethel, also flew bush for Alaska Airlines. Territorial Senator, member Alaska Constitutional Convention, US Marshall. Retired to Grants Pass, Oregon & died there in April 1983.
Joe & Harry Blunt were partners in Pacific Alaska Airways when they expanded the airline from British Columbia to Alaska. Joe known for mail runs Fairbanks to Bethel, Fairbanks to Nome. Went on to fly for Pan American Airways. Retired in San Francisco area.
Larry Allan Beck (1935-1990) Mr. Beck was a performer who worked to promote tourism to the 49th state. That work led to his appointment by Governor Keith Miller in 1972 as "Alaska's Ambassador of Good Will." He was not only a performer of the first rank but was also an authority on Alaska, the North and its gold rush history. He had a career of writing, reciting, singing, recording and traveling the world over. He wrote 6 books of poetry, recorded eight audiotapes and completed over 10 documentary films on various historical interests of Alaska. He was also in the first graduating class for West Anchorage High School. He is buried in Angelus Memorial Park, Anchorage.
Born about 1888 in Oregon. Came to Alaska in the mid-1920's. Believed to be the
first pilot to land on Kuskokwim River ice at Bethel. Was flying partner of Bennett-Rodebaugh Company in Fairbanks. Left territory for Idaho in 1930. Later lived in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Called the "Bristol Bay Sea Hawk" by the "Glacier Priest" Father Hubbard. Harry & Joe Barrows were partners in Pacific International Airways when they expanded from British Columbia to Alaska. On June 2, 1931 Harry, with co-pilot Al Monson made the first flight down the Alaska Peninsula past Kodiak Island when they flew Father Hubbard in a float plane to Chignik. In 1932 Pan American Airways purchased Pacific International and Alaska Airways forming Pacific Alaska Airways. Harry flew for Pacific Alaska Airways stationed in Anchorage.
Born November 18, 1892 in Oregon. Was a pilot & mechanic for Tex Rankin in Portland, Oregon in 1925. Made the first contract Air Mail flight in the northwest in 1926 flying from Vancouver, WA to Los Angeles in his TravelAir. In 1934 purchased a Tri-motor Ford from Grand Canyon Airlines of Arizona & flew to Alaska to organize and operate White Pass Airways out of Skagway. He and wife Esther also operated a gold mine near Nome. Was honored by United Airlines for being first pilot to fly mail on the Seattle - San Francisco run. Died November 19, 1975 at Nome, Alaska.
Born December 28, 1898. Became a commercial pilot in 1920, flew out of Vancouver, Bremerton & Seattle, WA before coming to Alaska to fly for Wien. In 1939 established Lon Brennan Flying Service out of Manley Hot Springs. Retired in 1948, died May 1967 at Stanwood, Washington.
First "temporary" CAA Department of Commerce aircraft inspector in Alaska. Was Marine pilot in WW II. Died in an auto accident in California in the 1950's
From Colorado. Flew in the Nome, Fairbanks and Anchorage areas. Purchased a Tri-motor Ford and formed Arctic Airways. Perhaps most famous for finding a spot in Southeast Alaska to land the Tri-motor Ford when the weather turned bad on an early trip to Seattle. Chet taught Archie Ferguson to fly.
Born March 31, 1895. Flew in South America. In about 1932 attempted to fly from Seattle to Tokyo, but the aircraft came apart during refueling attempt and he parachuted to safety. Came to Alaska in early 1930's with a Faden, one of the earliest all-metal planes, which he demolished in a wreck near Valdez. Formed Nat Browne Flying Service out of Valdez, then Fairbanks & Anchorage, then out of Bethel for many years. Flew mail routes to Lower Kuskowim & Yukon villages and to Goodnews Bay. Closed air service in 1950 after receiving contract to map DEW line radar sites. Moved to South 48 in mid-1950's. Died in August 1979 at Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Although Dawson Charlie was not really an Alaskan, his influence over Alaskan history earns him a place here.
Per Wikipedia: ca. 1860s – 26 December 1908) was a Canadian Tagish/Tlingit First Nation person and one of the co-discoverers of gold that
led to the Klondike Gold Rush located in the Yukon territory of Northwest Canada. He was the nephew of Skookum Jim Mason and accompanied
him on his search for his aunt Kate Carmack. He staked one of the first three claims in the Klondike, along with his uncle and George
Carmack. Kate Carmack was his aunt. Storyteller Angela Sidney was a niece.
He died in Carcross, Yukon when he fell off the White Pass railway bridge.
Born June 29, 1903 at Minneapolis, Kansas. He and his sister, Marvel (1904-1939), barnstormed together before he accepted an offer from Fairbanks Aircraft Co., in the mid-1920's. Joe & Ben Eielson were pilots on the 1928 Wilkins - Hearst Antarctic Expedition & was one of the pilots who found site of Eielson crash in Siberia in 1930. Flew bodies of Will Rogers and Wiley Post out of Barrow in 1935. In 1939 Joe was flying the Pan Am Clipper out of San Francisco. Later headed Pacific Alaska Airways, the Pan American Subsidiary. Joe died suddenly in Seattle in 1949 at age 45. He was inducted into the Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum Hall of Fame in 2002.
Commander, Military District of Alaska, Jefferson Columbus Davis, born 2 March
1827, Clark County, Indiana, was the first of eight children born to William Davis, Jr. (1800-1879) and Mary Drummond (1801-1881). He
grew up in the Charleston area of Clark County on his father's farm. Around 1860 he married Marietta Woodson Athon of Indianapolis, a
daughter of Dr. James S. Athon (1811-1875). They had no children, but adopted and raised a niece, Ida Davis.
Davis was a career officer in the United States Army (1848-1879). His ancestors were among the early settlers of Kentucky and Southern Indiana at the falls of the Ohio, and had been celebrated as Indian fighters. He was educated at the county academy and enlisted in the 3rd Indiana regiment recruited by Colonel Lane for the Mexican war.
For his performance Buena Vista, at the age of 20, Davis was given a direct commission as 2d lieutenant in the 1st artillery which he received June 17, 1848. He was promoted 1st lieutenant in 1852. In 1858 he was serving with the 1st U.S. artillery in Fort Moultrie, Charleston, South Carolina, an officer under Major Anderson. On April 12, 1861, Davis was stationed at Fort Sumter, Charleston, South Carolina, when the Confederates started their 36-hour bombardment. In recognition of his bravery during this trying ordeal he was promoted to captain and allowed leave of absence to recruit the 22d Indiana Volunteers, which he commanded as colonel.
On August 17, the 22nd Indiana was sent to seek out the Confederates in the interior of Missouri. Davis was assigned to the department of the Missouri as acting brigadier-general and for his action at Milford, Missouri, December 18, 1861, was promoted brigadier-general of volunteers. He commanded a division and contributed heavily toward a Union victory at the battle of Pea Ridge, March 8, 1862, and took part in the battle of Shiloh, April 6 and 7, and the siege of Corinth. After the evacuation of that place by the Confederates, May 29, he was assigned to the department of the Tennessee.
During this campaign he had received, as he alleged, harsh treatment from Major General William Nelson, his superior officer. It was in September 1862 that Davis's career passed a crisis point. He and his superior officer, William "Bull" Nelson, were at the Galt House hotel in Louisville, Kentucky, exchanging insults. The provoked Davis, at five feet, nine inches and 125 pounds, blatantly shot and instantly killed ("in cold blood") the six-foot-four, 300-pound Nelson. An arrest followed but Davis was never tried for this offense as politically powerful Governor Oliver P. Morton of Indiana quickly came to his defense.
General Davis was soon after assigned to duty in Covington, Kentucky. He commanded his division forming a part of the 20th army corps, at the battle of Stone's River, (Murfreesboro), Tennessee on December 31, 1862, when he greatly distinguished himself. General Rosecrans recommended him for promotion to the rank of major-general. He was exemplary at Chickamauga, Georgia, in September 1863. During the Atlanta campaign, Davis especially distinguished himself in the capture of Rome, Georgia, and in his successful attack at the battle of Jonesborough. He commanded the Fourteenth Corps in the march to the sea and the Carolinas campaign.
Davis was never received the second star of a major general although he received five brevet commissions. At the close of the war he was brevetted major-general of volunteers. on July 23, 1866, he was promoted colonel of the 23d U.S. infantry and transferred to the Pacific Northwest. From September 1867 to July 1870, Davis was the first commander of the military district of Alaska. The Alaskan assignment was not a choice one.
After the murder of General Edward Richard Sprigg Canby by the Modoc Indians in 1873 Davis succeeded to the command of the department and forced the tribe to surrender. Brevet Major General Davis died of pneumonia in Chicago, Illinois, November 30, 1879. He was buried in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Born February 10, 1901 at Van Zandt County, Texas. Learned to fly at Tex Rankin's Flying School in Vancouver, WA. Brought a B-1 Ryan to Alaska in March 1934. Flew for Alaska Exploration & Mining Co., McGee Airways, Woodley Airways, Star Air Lines, and founded Bering Sea Airways. Read his fascinating story in his new book
Born Philadelphia, PA January 11, 1902. Came to Alaska in 1927 to be commercial fisherman. Learned to fly in Naval Reserve in Florida. Served on active duty on carriers Saratoga & Lexington. Came back to Alaska to fly for Pioneer Airways out of Ketchikan. Came to Anchorage in early 1930s and flew from Merrill Field to Kuskokwim and Bristol Bay for McGee Airways and Bowman Airways. Went to Fairbanks in 935 to fly for Noel Wien. In 1936 formed Jim Dodson Air Service and in 1947 joined with four other outfits to form Northern Consolidated Airlines. Died in Anchorage in December 1969.
Born 1893 in Detroit, MI. Came to Alaska in 1929 to join Russ Merrill as second pilot for Anchorage Air Transport. Flew for Eielson's company, Alaska Airways & in 1929 was flying a Stinson on same expedition where Eielson lost his life. In 1930 formed Dorbandt-Cope with Lon Cope selling it to Pacific International Airways in 1931. Flew for PIA based in Anchorage, and did a lot of flying in the Valley of the Ten Thousand Smokes area. Flew mercy flights to the North Coast of Siberia in 1930 & 1931. In 1938 flew a Tri-motor Ford from Los Angeles to Anchorage for Ptamigan Airways. Was an excellent pilot with a reputation as a daredevil, often in trouble with the CAA. Died in 1935 of pneumonia in Fairbanks, buried in Anchorage.
Arrived Cordova early-1930s. Later moved to Copper Center & with Al Lyle started Lyle and Dorrance Airways with service to 40 Mile Country, Nabesna and Copper River Valley. Died in airplane crash in 40 Mile Country in 1937. Buried in Dawson, Yukon Territory.
Born Clarendon, PA 1887, graduated Yale University 1908. A mining engineer he came to Alaska in August 1910 to work in the Beatson Mine in Prince William Sound. Came to Anchorage in 1930. Operated Lucky Shot mine in mountains near Willow. Learned to fly with Steve Mills in Seattle. Operated the first ambulance plane which had room for a stretcher and a nurse. He taught Toivo Aho to fly. Was one of the original investors who helped to start Star Air Service and was President from 1932 - 1938. He was the main promoter of building a canal to connect Lake Spenard & Lake Hood to provide a better sea plane base for Anchorage. Went back to mining & died at Golden Zone Gold camp in 1957, buried in Anchorage.
Flew Curtiss Robin out of Candle in mid-1930's. Died in aircraft accident in Norton Sound, between Kotzebue and Deering in mid-1930's.
Made first non-stop flight between Seattle & Juneau in 1929 in Wasp-powered Lockheed Vega on floats for Alaska Washington Airways. Flight took 9 hours 35 minutes. Jack Halloran was mechanic on the flight & R. E. "Bob" Ellis was navigator. Continued to fly in Southeastern Alaska.
Born at Hatton, North Dakota in 1897. The second most famous American aviation pioneer after Charles Lindbergh. Arrived in Fairbanks in 1922 as a school teacher. In 1923 pioneered air mail service in Alaska flying twice monthly mail from Fairbanks to McGrath in an open cockpit DeHavilland. In September 1928 Eielson & Joe Crosson were pilots on the Wilkins -Hearst Antarctic Expedition. Also in 1928 Eielson received the Distinguished Flying Cross for flying Sir Hubert Wilkins from Point Barrow to Spitzbergen, Norway in a Lockheed Vega, the first flight across the North Pole. Purchased Anchorage Air Transport in 1929 and changed the name to Alaska Airways. Obtained a contract to fly 15 stranded passengers & six tons of furs from the trading ship Nanuck which was stranded in the ice off Siberia. Carl and his mechanic Earl Borland were killed in their Hamilton Metalplane in Siberia November 9, 1929 on their second flight to the ship. He was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 1985, & the Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum Hall of Fame in 2003.
fly in Oakland, CA before 1930; came to McGrath in 1934 to work for the game warden, then to Anchorage as a pilot for Star Air Service.
Flew Bellancas, Stinsons, Ford
Trimotors out of Anchorage. Left Alaska in 1943 and was chief pilot for Consolidated Vultee Aircraft in San Diego, CA. Last flew in Alaska in 1947 on Kenai Peninsula on a bear hunt.
Born St. Albans, VT January 20, 1903. At age 16 attended US Naval Academy where he received navigation & flight training. In 1929 Anscel Eckmann asked him to plot a course for the Alaska Washington Airways record breaking nonstop flight of a Lockheed Vega from Seattle to Juneau. Ellis went along to begin his long aviation career in Alaska. He flew all over Alaska with a variety of airlines. In 1936 he purchased a Waco float plane & established Ellis Air Transport in Ketchikan, later renamed Ellis Air Lines which merged with Alaska Coastal Airlines in 1965 to become Alaska Coastal-Ellis Airlines, which became part of Alaska Airlines in 1968. Was a Senator in the Alaska Territorial Legislature 1955 - 1958. Bob died in May 9, 1994 at Ketchikan. In 2004 he was inducted into the Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum Hall of Fame.
Came to Juneau in mid-1930's as pilot for Clarence Walter's Alaska School of Aeronautics. Then flew for Hans Mirow in Nome. Later for Star Air Service in Fairbanks and Point Barrow. Died in pulp mill accident in Southeastern in 1959.
Flew briefly for McGee Airways, then for Noel Wien in Fairbanks. Died in aircraft crash in McGrath.
"Christ, I like to fly," sums up this colorful character of Northern Aviation. Born January 24, 1895 in Ohio, arrived in Alaska in 1917. Ferguson family hired Chet Browne from Colorado in the 1920's to teach Archie to fly. Once described as the craziest pilot in Alaska. He owned a restaurant in Kotzebue and operated his own flying service out of Kotzebue for many years. Died of natural causes in Mexico in February 1967.
Edward J. Fortier (1917-2001) Mr. Fortier was stationed in Ketchikan in 1942 with the U.S. Army. He served in the Counter-Intelligence Corps and was Alaska's last living spy to have served in Alaska during WWII. Edward Fortier, also known as "Fast Eddie" or "Champy," was one of Alaska's leading journalists and editors. During his 58 years in Alaska, Mr. Fortier's career ranged from being the Director of Territorial Civil Defense to Hospital Administrator at Providence Hospital. He served on the first Alaska Big Game Guide Board. Professionally, his passion was writing and editing. He was executive editor of Alaska Magazine from 1966-1976 and author of the book One Survived. He was a former correspondent for the National Observer and reporter for the Anchorage Times between 1946 and 1948. During the same period of time, he produced and edited the weekly tabloid, "The 49th Star." He is buried in Valley Memorial Park, Palmer AK.
Charles Harold Gillam was born 1903 Kankakee, Illinois and raised in Nebraska. In 1923 came to Cordova & Chitina as a "cat skinner" for the Alaska Road Commission, then Bennett-Rodebaugh Airplane Transport Co. in Fairbanks. Learned to fly in Fairbanks in 1929 & with only 40 hrs training & no license, flew a Stearman across Alaska in the search for the Eielson crash & was the pilot who spotted the wreckage. In 1929 he was engaged to Joe Crosson's sister Marvel who was killed during the Cleveland Air Derby. Gillam flew a mail route from Fairbanks to Bethel. In 1931 he left Fairbanks & founded Aircraft Charter Co. in Cordova & Copper Center. In about 1932 he founded Gillam Airways. He died following a Jan 5, 1943 crash in a Lockheed Electra 10B near Ketchikan on a flight from Seattle to Anchorage with 5 passengers. All survived the original crash; one died from injuries, & Harold froze to death trying to walk out for help. The remaining 4 passengers were rescued by Coast Guard Cutter McLane after 33 days. Harold is buried in Fairbanks.
Born San Ramon, CA, came to Alaska in 1934 with Frank Dorbandt as co-pilot in first Ford Tri-motor in the Territory. They founded Ptarmigan Airlines which lasted only a short time. Don flew for McGee, Star and in 1938 went with Woodley Airways. In 1943 died in a crash in Gastineau Channel on a scheduled flight from Juneau to Anchorage in a Woodley Tri-motor Stinson A.
Born April 6, 1909 in Modoc County, CA, learned to fly with Al Horning at Hancock School of Aviation, Santa Maria, CA; came to Alaska with Horning in 1934. Worked for McGee Airways on mail runs from Anchorage down the Kuskokwim & Yukon Delta. In 1937 Goodman and Oscar Winchell formed Alaska Interior Airlines in McGrath & Anchorage which only lasted three months, selling to Star Air Service when Mac McGee returned to Star management. In 1937 Don enlisted investors & acquired Star Air Service renaming it Star Air Lines. He was active in Star management in efforts to expand to routes from Alaska to the States and was prominent in development of Alaska Star Airways during war years. Joined the Royal Air Force Ferry Command, then the Naval Air Transport. Quit the aviation business to become a contractor after World War II. Retired to Freemont, CA & celebrated his 100th birthday on April 6, 2009.
Born about 1898 in Washington. Learned to fly in the U.S. Air Service at Arcadia, Florida. Was a bush pilot in Nome in the very early days of aviation. After leaving Alaska was for a period the personal pilot for movie star Wallace Beery.
Pilot for Yukon Treadwell Mining Company of Juneau in early 1930's. Flew Bellanca float planes. Slim & his passenger died in October 1936 in the crash of a Bellanca that once belonged to actor Wallace Beery. They crashed in British Columbia on a flight between Seattle and Juneau.
Aircraft inspector, Department of Commerce CAA came to Alaska in 1934 as the permanently assigned CAA inspector replacing Hugh Brewster who had been temporarily assigned. He was inspector at the time of Post-Rogers crash in 1035.
Early parachute jumper and pilot. Came to Alaska and worked for Bob Reeve out of Valdez. Then moved to Fairbanks and flew for old Pacific Alaska Airways to Bethel and Nome. Also flew briefly for Hans Mirow. Left Alaska with Pan American to fly international routes to Central and South America. Died in South America of natural causes.
Flew Curtiss Robin in Fairbanks and Chicken Creek area; later went with Pacific Alaska Airways, then Pan American Captain in Seattle.
Flew for Ferguson Airways in Ketchikan & Wien in Fairbanks and Nome. Was a partner in Lavery Airways with Bill Lavery in Fairbanks. They had a monocoupe and an open cockpit Standard. Known by some as "Smiling Jack".
Partner with Percy Hubbard in Fairbanks. Died in airplane accident while returning from Dawson. Burned plane was found years later.
Born Victoria, BC; Learned to fly with the RCAF during WW I. First flew in Alaska out of Fairbanks on the mail run Nenana - Bethel. Also flew for Pacific International Airways out of Anchorage. In 1936 Alex partnered with James V. Davis starting a new service in Southeast Alaska, Marine Airways. Their first plane was a Bellanca Pacemaker dubbed "Shakey Jake." In 1940 Marine Airways merged with Shell Simmons' Alaska Air Transport to form Alaska Coastal Airlines, which merged with Ellis Airlines in 1965 to become Alaska Coastal-Ellis Airlines which became a part ofAlaska Airlines in 1968.
PPhil R. Holdsworth (1910-2001) Mr. Holdsworth came to Alaska in 1913. He and his wife Peggie were married in Fairbanks in 1942. He became mill Superintendent of Mindanao Mines in Surigao. In 1942 Gen. Douglas MacArthur ordered our Philippine troops to surrender. Mr. Holdsworth resigned his commission as a second lieutenant and with his wife Peggie conducted guerilla activities with the locals against the Japanese. They were captured on July 1, 1942 and were held prisoners until February 3, 1945. In 1952 Mr. Holdsworth assumed the position of Commissioner of Mines for the state of Alaska and with statehood in 1959, Phil assumed the position of Commissioner of Natural Resources where he was largely responsible for the selection of Prudhoe Bay for state lands. Later, he was president of the state Chamber of Commerce, Alaska State Elks and the Alaska Miner's Association. He is buried in Angelus Memorial Park, Anchorage.
Born Dec 17, 1913 Boise, ID. Learned to fly in 1935 at St. Louis, MO. Came to Anchorage in the summer of 1937 delivering the first Taylor Cub and giving flying lessons. He had a mechanic's license as well as a pilot's license. He worked for Ray Petersen then Woodley Airways. In 1941 Roy went with Pan American flying in Alaska, then flying the Pan American Clipper out of San Francisco. Retired to Seattle area as Chief Pilot for Pan American. Died of natural causes March 21, 2000 at Enumclaw, Washington.
Born about 1908 in Washington. Learned to fly in Anchorage in early 1930s. Flew for McGee Airways and Star Air Service until joining CAA in Flight Section when first established in Alaska. Later was Airways Facilities Division Chief with FAA in Los Angeles.
Born about 1899 in Wisconsin. A Fairbanks businessman who spent much money, time and effort in developing aviation in the Interior. Pilot and operator of numerous air services including Service Airways of Fairbanks. After Alaska lived in Bellevue, Washington.
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