In my novel, The Secrets of Dr. John Welles, Claude Willoughby, one of John’s best friends, has had his share of trials and tribulations. When John and Claude first met, they sized up each other and decided they weren’t too keen on pursuing a friendship. After a few terse words, they overcame their differences, and together with Sam Feldman, forged an alliance that lasted a lifetime. So close was their bond, that when one of the afore-mentioned tragedies sent Claude to self-imposed exile in California, John and Sam felt as if their right arm had been severed.
Claude obtained his pilot’s license as a means of dealing with his grief. He also secured employment at the airfield where he trained and later joined the Navy as a pilot during World War II. I had to research exactly what Claude would have encountered in 1937 when he learned how to fly. In doing so, I came across the most unusual website listing a compilation of airfields, now abandoned but operating during the time period about which I was writing. I really shouldn’t have been surprised; the Internet has a site for just about any subject a writer would need to research.
Abandoned & Little Known Airfields contains descriptions and images of 1,995 airfields in all fifty states and is organized alphabetically by state. I hope you find this information as useful as I did.