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Showing posts from February, 2021

This Day in Machesney History -- February 14, 1931

Fred Machesney renews lease on the Ziock Farm located on North second street. Machesney operated from this spot since the Spring of 1928. Machesney plans to expand the airport facilities on the 170 acre plot of land. The airport is already equipped with a 3,870 foot runway, a machine shop, weather service and a waiting room. The airport is currently home to eight aircraft with two owned by Machesney. Due to lack of funds coming from the city, Machesney considered shutting down the air mail. Machesney up to this point maintained the airport to the strict air mail standards and footed the bill entirely himself. This included 24 hour service, turning on and off the lights, providing weather reports and of course meticulous care for the grass landing field. The chamber of Commerce thusly has promised to make new efforts to bring additional funding to the airport to allow the service to continue.

This Day in Machesney History -- February 11, 1930

Northwest Airways traffic managers C. G. Chatwick and Lucious Lobdell, visited Machesney Airport yesterday. The two men determined that they believe Rockford may one day be one of the most important air centers in the country.  The airport facilities in Chicago were congested and are not adequate for larger aircraft. Rockford located outside of the city was believed to be a logical place to help ease that congestion. Context: Northwest Air ways was looking to add Rockford as "flag" stop with the hopes it becoming a regular line stop on their Minneapolis to Chicago line. A "flag" stop meant that passing Northwest aircraft would fly low over the Machesney Airport while flying their route. If there was a passenger or cargo that needed to be picked up, Fred Machesney or his staff would literally flag down the passing aircraft to return to the field for a landing. Machesney and the Chamber of Commerce were making numerous improvements to the field at this time to improv

This Day In Machesney History-- February 3

On February 3, 1930, Machesney Field, then known as Rockford Airport was visited by US Department of Commerce flying inspector J. E. Reed. This was a routine inspection in order to certify Machesney's flying field for official commercial and military use. This was an important step in securing government approval to use the field for air mail and passenger line service. Northwest Airways was already flying over the airport at this time and in negotiations with Machesney and the government to make this a regular line stop for the Minnesota to Chicago Route. (Contract Air Mail route 9) Ironically, the flying inspector arrived by train. After inspecting the field, he left at noon to visit airports in Dekalb and Sycamore.