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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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 Pedigo 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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L.M. Pedigo was born into a family of five other children on July 24, 1894 in Glasgow, KY. His father was a Liveryman, which at that time meant horses. I don't know much about Pedigo's early life. The 1900 U.S. Census placed him in Glasgow with his large family. The same in the 1910 Census.

The records I researched for Pedigo were challenging in a couple of places. The first reason is there were two Lawrence M. Pedigos, both of whom, it seems, were born in Glasgow on July 24. The first was born in 1887, and our Pedigo in 1894. The former was a pool hall and hotel propreitor who later became a local Iowa gangster arrested for murder. There was lots of news coverage for him in the 1920s-30s.

The second is the chronology of photographs of Pedigo available online at the Upper Mississippi Valley Digital Image Archive (MVD, see below). The photos were dated 1935-1940 by the Archive. But, below, you'll discover that Pedigo flew West in 1933. I have contacted the Archive about this.

Notwithstanding these discrepancies, according to, Pedigo married Geraldine Hunter (1904(09?)-1991) in 1921. They had two children during the 1920s, see below.

1927 National Air Tour (Source:


Pedigo learned to fly ca. 1925. In this 1928 REFERENCE, he is identified as posessing Private pilot certificate P1436, which he eventually replaced with a Transport rating.

Before he visited Peterson Field, Lawrence Pedigo had an interesting and productive life in aviation. Besides starting a family, he participated in aviation events and managed aviation businesses. At left, from the Davenport (IA) Democrat and Leader of September 19, 1927, is a brief filler that appeared in a larger article about the 1927 National Air Races cross-country derby that flew from New York to Spokane, WA that year. Pedigo and Roy T. "Stub" Quinby flew a Waco 10 as entry number 35. According to the Aircraft Yearbook, they did not finish.

News Article, May 28, 1928 (Source:



From the same newspaper, May 28, 1928, right, part of Pedigo's job as manager of the Davenport Municipal Airport appeared to be one of making sure citizens were favorably impressed by activities at his airport.

As with many businesses, there are sometimes "misunderstandings." The article below, from the same newspaper of April 7, 1929, tells of what appears to be a financial deviation that resulted in a law suit.

News Article, April 7, 1929 (Source:


In another article from May 5, 1929, Pedigo provided coroner's testimony regarding the crash of an airplane from the Davenport facility. The instructor was killed and his student badly injured. The cause of the crash was not resolved.


In the 1930 U.S.Census, Pedigo lived with Geraldine and two children, Ruth (age 5) and Lawrence, Jr. (1, b. 1929). A servant, Lillian Griebel, lived with them at 1802 West Locust Street in Davenport. Pedigo rented his home for $50 per month. He was coded as 34 years old (which would place his birth year nearer 1896). His occupation was cited as "Aviator" in the "Airport" industry.

Pedigo was mentioned in an article (not shown) from the Iowa City Press-Citizen, July 13, 1930 described preparations for an air show at the Marengo, IA airport. The 1932 Davenport city directory cited his title as general manager Davenport Airways, Inc. and of the Mississippi Valley Flying School.

Lawrence Pedigo landed once at Colorado Springs, near July 31, 1932 (he didn't enter a date or time in the Register). He flew the Stinson S Junior NC10878 (S/N 8056). He carried three unidentified passengers. They arrived at Peterson Field from Davenport, IA and were westbound to Los Angeles, CA. No purpose was listed for their flight. Below, courtesy of the Upper Mississippi Valley Digital Image Archive, is a photograph of Pedigo and the Stinson, dated by the Archive circa 1938. It is probably more likely dated 1928-1933.

Lawrence M. Pedigo and Stinson NC10878, Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)
Lawrence M. Pedigo and Stinson NC10878, Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)


At the time of this photograph, Pedigo was the manager of Cram Field, the Davenport Municipal Airport. In a retrospective article, the Davenport Morning Democrat of October 13, 1955 reported on the establishment of the field as follows, "About 1925 a group known as Davenport Airways had leased some land out on Division Street. As Davenporters showed greater and greater enthusiasm for aviation both the field and the activities were expanded. Lawrence Pedigo, one of the first pilots in this area, became manager of the field." Further, interest was shown by, "...The Democrat's own Ralph W. Cram, editor and publisher. Cram's tremendous enthusiasm for flying won him the unofficial title of 'flying editor,' and made him a nationally known figure in aviation. On Nov. 12, 1928, the landing site on Division Street officially became Davenport's airport and was dedicated Cram Field in honor of The Democrat's editor and publisher. Operations of the airport were in the hands of Davenport Airways."


Lawrence M. Pedigo and Stinson NC10878, Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)
Lawrence M. Pedigo and Stinson NC10878, Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)


At left, from MVD, is another photograph of Pedigo and the Stinson. It clearly shows the name of the airport on the hangar in the background and the registration number of the airplane.

Pedigo landed with the same Stinson at the Davis-Monthan Airfield, Tucson, AZ and signed the Register on July 31, 1932. He carried three passengers again. They were inbound from Chicago, IL. They departed for Davenport the same day. It appears that his landing was part of the same itinerary that brought him through Colorado Springs.



An unfortunate incident on January 24, 1933 took Pedigo's life. He had an appendix operation and died of complications therefrom. This result was more common, in the days before antibiotics, than it is nowadays. His death certificate is below.

Lawrence M. Pedigo, Death Certificate, January 24, 1933 (Source:
Lawrence M. Pedigo, Death Certificate, January 24, 1933 (Source:


Davenport , Ia. , Jan. 25.(AP)
Lawrence M. Pedigo, 36, general manager of the Davenport Airways, Inc., operators of Cram field, died this morning at a local hospital following an operation for appendicitis last Wednesday. He had been Flying since 1925.

Pedigo opened the airport in Davenport in 1928 and a year later it became a municipal field and the name was changed to Cram field. He was also general manager of the Mississippi Valley flying school and secretary-treasurer of the local chapter of the National Aeronautic Association.

A news article, right, from the Burlington Gazette January 25, 1933, provided some details. He flew West carrying Transport pilot certificate T1436.

I have no further information about Pedigo, his businesses, or his family. If you can help fill in the blanks, please let me KNOW.


Interestingly, the following image from MVD is dated ca. 1935. The archive's caption states, "Plane lost engine at 1600 feet and landed safely. Beans was pilot of 'Miss Chicago' world endurance and employed by Pedigo as pilot. Pedigo was manager of Cram Field. Airplane was a Stinson with Wagner engine. Information from back of photograph."

Lawrence M. Pedigo (L) and Kenneth "Beans" Hunter Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)
Lawrence M. Pedigo (L) and Kenneth "Beans" Hunter Ca. 1928-1933 (Source: MVD)

Information about "Beans" Hunter can be found over in Tucson at my Davis-Monthan Airfield site. That an aircraft would physically come apart from its engine is a highly unlikely and usually catastropic event. The loss of the engine mass in front of the center of gravity (CG) would result in severe rearward movement of the CG that would take full forward elevator to control. That it was brought safely to earth required great skill and is very lucky. It's unclear from the MVD caption who the skilled pilot was. And the photo was not snapped in 1935, since Pedigo had been deceased for two years by then.



THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 07/09/15 REVISED: 7/26/15, 01/05/20