AIRPORT BEING FINISHED
On February 9, 1928
the Stanley News column of the
Gastonia Gazette reported:
"The airport at this place is now receiving the finishing touches
and it will be ready for the try-out trips the first of the coming month.
It is being wired for the power to be turned on to try the lighting system. Already there have
been planes passing over the route and just as soon as the last touches have been given to the
field it will be ready for landing. Those in charge of the field state that this is an ideal
field and that the field will be used for various purposes within a short time."
AIRPORT ABOUT READY FOR USE
On March 1, 1928, The
Gastonia Gazette reported on the
progress of the Airport as follows:
"The final touches are being given the landing field at this place, including the light
connections and the field will be ready for use by the appointed time, March 8, when service
is to begin on the Richmond-Atlana route. The field will be tested out beginning with the first
of next week and those who have been here inspecting the field state that is is an edal landing,
and that the landing is as good as can be found on the route. Mr. L. J. (Luther) Sherrill has been
secured as caretaker for the field and the field will have a daily inspection to see that everything
remains in first class condition."
AIRPORT BEING USED
On April 16, 1928 the Stanley News Column of the Gastonia Gazette continued to report progress on
the airport as follows:
"Aready the airport at this place has been tried out and been found to be in perfect condition with
the exception of the removing of all rocks measuring above two inches and a contract is being let for the
removal of these rocks which will place the entinre field in first class condition. The planes were about
to come in now from any direction and to make a perfect landing and they have been passing the way in
groups as they continue along the route to familiarize themselves with the landings prior to May 1,
when actual service will commence."
The Gastonia Gazette in the Stanley News Column of May 2, 1928 stated the following:
"On Tuesday night there were around one hundred people who remained out to witness the passing of the
first mail plane. With the large signal light at the landing in perfect condition and the red, green,
and white lights around the field visible for miles, the plane passed at 10:45 P.M. with the motor in
the plane making a musical hum. As the plane passed beyond the field at this place it made an upward
turn of a few hundred feet and continued on the route."
Charles Lindbergh Flies Over the Airport
Olin Handsell remembers once when he was working out in his father's cotton field, (they lived not far
from the airport), he saw Charles Lindbergh in the famous airplane Spirit of St. Louis as he
buzzed the airport on his flight over.
This was the time in history of the great dirigibles, such as the Hindenburg, the Led Zepplin, etc.
Some of them followed the mail route and flew over Stanley giving the townspeople a thrill.
The Gastonia Daily Gazette reported on October 8, 1928:
"The big naval dirigible, the Los Angeles en route from Lake Hurst, NJ to San Antonio, Texas for the
American Legion convention, passed over Stanley at 6 o'clock Sunday morning. It was about a mile west
of town and was making good time at high altitude."
"The dirigible passed over just as our people
were getting up from their slumber. So great was the appearance of the ship that Mr. Luther Sherrill,
caretaker of the airport there notified his family that there was a ship coming over that he was
unable to describe. He sated the ship was moving about 50 miles per hour and resembled a gigantic fish,
some 400 feet in length and that the ship moved very quietly and with great ease. Mr. Sherrill has to
make daily inspections of the field and give reports of the movements of planes."
On September 3, 1932 the Gastonia Gazette reported:
"Luther Sherrill has been busy with a force of men during the past several days at the airport taking
down all the equipment of the field with the exception of the tower and beacon light. The field has
been discontinued and the equipment is being shipped elsewhere for use."
Thus was the end of Stanley's Airport which was located on the north end of town near the street now
named Airport Road.
[ The Museum ] [ Contact Us ] [ Stanley History ] [ Photo Galleries ] [ Citizens ] [ Recollections ] [ Schools ] [ Churches ] [ Community ] [ Recent History ] [ Order the Books ] [ Topic Index ] [ Site Index ] [ Search ] [ Acknowledgments ] [ Related Links ] [ Guestbook ]