Your copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register 1925-1936 with all the pilots' signatures and helpful cross-references to pilots and their aircraft is available at the link. 375 pages with black & white photographs and extensive tables


The Congress of Ghosts (available as eBook) 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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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.


Winners' Viewpoints: The Great 1927 Trans-Pacific Dole Race (available as eBook) 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.


Clover Field: The first Century of Aviation in the Golden State (available in paperback) 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. 281 pages, black & white photographs.


the register


I'm looking for information and photographs of pilot Morehouse and his airplane to include on this page. If you have some you'd like to share, please click this FORM to contact me.





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Silas Morehouse landed once at Colorado Springs, on April 7, 1930 at 8:45AM. This was a work-a-day landing by a pilot who holds an esteemed rank among Golden Age aviators (see below).

He flew to Colorado Springs in the largest transport aircraft of the era, the four-engine Fokker F-32 NC334N. He was one of a flight of two F-32s that were on a transcontinental voyage from New Jersey to Los Angeles, CA. Please direct your browser to the link for NC334N to learn about the context of the flight, the itinerary and passenger list.

Silas A. Morehouse, Date Unknown (Source: Web)
Silas A. Morehouse, Date Unknown (Source: Web)


Morehouse was Chief Pilot for Western Air Express (WAE, later to merge with TWA). The pilot of the other airplane, NC333N, was Victor Bertrandias, Chief Test Pilot for Fokker. They were on the maiden transcontinental flight for WAE with these brand new airplanes. Morehouse appears in uniform at right, wearing the handsome and distinctive WAE cap badge. His cap badge, as well as his WAE wings and other artifacts, are exhibited at the Silas Amos Morehouse Photograph and Document Collection.

Belleville Telescope (KS), August 20, 1930 (Source: Woodling)
Belleville Telescope (KS), August 20, 1930 (Source: Woodling)


The photo, left, from the Belleville Telescope (KS), August 20, 1930, shows him welcoming Alton N. Parker to the WAE fold. Parker was prabably a signer of the Grand Central Air Terminal Register (GCAT) on Thursday, August 21, 1931. I say probably, because the tower Operator entered only the pilot's last name. He was, however, flying a Northrop Alpha owned by T.W.A. with whom WAE merged. The original news photograph, uncropped, is exhibited at Morehouse's Collection link, above.

Morehouse enjoyed a varied career in aviation, including the military (earned wings at Kelly Field, TX, 1925), corporate work and the airlines. He was born November 20,1897 in Lafeyette, IN. A feature article in the Pittsburgh Press (PA), April 18, 1942 cites him as a native of Lafayette, IN.

An article, quoted below, from the TARPA News of November, 1987 summarizes his career. It also points out a distinction shared by very few other human beings who ever lived on Earth, that of being seniority number 1 for a major U.S. airline. This quote is from the article (page 42) by long-time TWA historian Ed Betts, entitled, "LOOKING BACK SIXTY YEARS TO 1927." TARPA News was a magazine dedicated to TWA retirees.


"Except for the convenience of the round number the 60th anniversary (diamond) is generally just another year gone by (except for the airline pilot who has reached the magic age limit and has to retire). The pilots retiring this year (at age 60) were just born during 1927, the same year when a number of our former TWA pilots were beginning their airline careers.
Five of them, including two of our current TARPA members, had a 1927 seniority date and
were the ranking top five until 1941 and the others through 1947, when the resignations of
Jack Frye and Paul Richter were effective.

"During past anniversary celebrations there has always been an argument between airline PRO departments as to which is the nation's oldest airline in terms of continuous service. Western (before the Delta takeover) generally was accepted as the oldest with a 4/17/26 date when they began their mail route (CAM #4) between SLC and LA. Much to Western's chagrin,
TWA chose this same date for their anniversary celebrations, claiming that most of Western's
assets were a part of TWA when the merger of WAE and TAT-Maddux was culminated in late 1930. It will be interesting to see who lays claim to being the oldest in the years to come..,Delta ? There was always an argument among several TWA pilots as to who was he most senior. Despite the protests made when the first seniority list was published, in 1934, the # 1 ranking went to Si Morehouse.

"Silas A. Morehouse was born in 1898, and learned to fly in the Army. His early years of flying also included some movie work and test pilot for the Fokker Company. He joined WAE as a pilot and part time mechanic on April 1, 1927, flying the open cockpit Douglas M-2 on the mail run. Si was the pilot on the inaugural flight, in 1928 when WAE originated their "Model Airway" between LA and SF, using the tri-motor F-10 (Fokker). He also was the pilot when WAE began their transcontinental service (fly by day, train by night) in June of 1929, a month before TAT began their 48 hour schedule. WAE flew as far as KC for their train connections to the east. Si was chief pilot for WAE and the pilot when they introduced the nation's first 4-engine airliner, the 32-passenger F-32. During WW II Si was with the Air Transport Command in the Pacific Theater and retired as a full Colonel. Until he quit flying in 1946, Si was always the senior pilot on TWA; a record which will be impossible to top so far as the pilot group. There are other records which will be hard to beat such as Frankie Parent was always the # 1 Flight Engineer from 5/5/40 until he retired in July of 1971, and Lee Flanagin's time as the most senior TWA employee (2/26 to 6/70).

"Unfortunately, for the past several years, Si has been a victim of Alzheimer's disease and is
not aware of his 60th anniversary. According to his wife, Helen, his friends would probably
not recognize him as he has lost a lot of weight and grown a mustache during his stay in a
VA hospital in Virginia."

If you are at the TARPA article's link, read forward a few pages to learn about other pilots high on the TWA seniority list. They read like a "Who's Who?" from the Airfield Registers that are the focus of this suite of Web sites (click HOME, above, right, to view a summary table of the Web sites). Mentioned in Betts' article are Eddie Bellande, Jack Frye, Lew Goss, Paul Richter, Larry Fritz and LaMar Nelson.


In the 1940s, Morehouse joined the military during WWII and was based in the China-India_Burma Theater. The article below is from the Hump Express, Vol. 1, No. 6, published by India China Division, Air Transport Command, February 22, 1945. The small portrait is part of the article, and it is that fuzzy, though larger, in the original at the link.


Trials, Tribulations of Enlisted Men, Officers
Is 'Old Stuff' to Col. Morehouse, CO of 1345th

Served for Many Years as GI Before Getting His Commission

1345 BU, India - Perhaps one of the prerequisites for the job of CO of a base is a knowledge of the trials and tribulations of the enlisted men and junior officers, plus a capability for the job gained through army service and civilian experience.
If such is the case, Lt. Col. Silas A. Morehouse, commander of this, the largest ICD base in India, is well qualified to handle the job. He served in the army shortly after World War I and until 1927 as an enlisted man. As for civilian experience in handling air transportation of personnel and supplies, his record of 15 years with Transcontinental and Western Airlines speaks for itself.
When he entered the Army again in 1942, he left a job as division superintendent for TWA, and took over duties as A-3 officer at Stout Field, Indiana, in the Troop Carrier Command. He was then a captain.

CO of Transport Unit


In September, 1943, Morehouse arrived in CBI as a major. In those days a man was a jack-of-all-trades and soon the newly arrived officer found himself a transport pilot and CO of the China Transport group.
Shortly thereafter, Maj. Morehouse was upped to the rank of lieutenant colonel and assumed command of one of ICD's bases in Assam. His record at that base was indicated by the ever-increasing amount of supplies that crossed the Hump from his field.

Long Flying Record
Col. Morehouse's flying career started back in 1925 when he received his wings as a two-engine pilot at Kelly Field, Texas. he began flying at 27 and in 20 years has established an enviable record, both with the Army and with TWA.
He is married and makes his home at Los Angeles, Calif., although his wife is now living at Alexandria, Va.

In December 1947, Morehouse retired from TWA. He was featured, at age 83, in the December 8, 1980 issue of TWA's magazine, TWA Skyliner. Please direct your browser to the link and scroll to page two of the download (PDF 2Kb) for the picture article ("A Man for All Seasons"). Also of interest is the photograph at the bottom of the first page of the magazine showing a Transcontinental & Western Air logo salvaged from the fuselage of a Fokker F-10 similar to the one Morehouse flew through Colorado Springs.

Silas Morehouse was born Saturday, November  20, 1897 and flew West Tuesday, November
22, 1988 at age 91 years, 2 days. He flew with Tranport certificate T399, a relatively early number.


Although we see Morehouse in 1930 at Colorado Springs, this was not his first transcontental flight in airliners that were the largest of their time. About two years earlier, in May 1928, he had flown one of a group of three Fokker F-10 aircraft across the U.S. from east to west coast. The article, below, from the May 21, 1928 Los Angeles Times, describes the flight, the itinerary and some of the passengers involved. Morehouse was the pilot of airplane #1 and is cited in the second paragraph of the article. Note the differences in the F-10 compared to the F-32, NC334N, that Morehouse flew into Peterson Field.

May 21, 1928, Los Angeles Times (Source: Bybee)
May 21, 1928, Los Angeles Times (Source: Bybee)

It is not clear if any of the aircraft landed at Colorado Springs in 1928. However, two of them did land at Tucson, AZ on May 18th and 21st. On May 18th, NC5358, plane #2, piloted by Hugh Wells, identified in the article as chief test pilot for the Fokker company. Plane number three was NX5170, which landed on the 21st. It was flown by Tucson Register pilot Max Cornwell. Please direct your browser to the links for further information. Does anyone KNOW the registration number of Morehouse's F-10? Thanks to site visitor John Bybee for calling our attention to this article.

Morehouse is also signed in the GCAT Register at least twice, on March 27, 1931 and on August 20, 1931. Both times he was departing in an unidentified Fokker aircraft bound for Kansas City, MO. He also shows up in my Albuquerque, NM Register twelve times during 1928-29.