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YOUR PURCHASE OF THESE BOOKS SUPPORTS THE WEB SITES THAT BRING TO YOU THE HISTORY BEHIND OLD AIRFIELD REGISTERS

Your copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register 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

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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 www.dmairfield.org 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 It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders.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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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I'm looking for information and photographs of pilot Sandblom 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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JOSEPH VICTOR SANDBLOM

J.V. Sandblom landed and signed the Clover Field Register once, Sunday, July 7, 1929 at 1:40PM. He carried one unidentified passenger in the Stearman C-3B he identified as NC8813. Sandbloom recorded his homebase as Los Angeles and wrote "Rogers Airport" in the destination column of the Register. Although his name was clearly spelled "Sandblom" in the Register, and his U.S. Census and other official records spelled it that way, journalists consistently misspelled his name. His airplane was also recorded once in the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register on April 10, 1930, flown by Jimmie Angel.

Sandblom was born November 20, 1890 in Sweden. I have no information about where he spent his early life or his early education. I found no 1900 U.S. Census information for him.The 1910 U.S. Census placed him at age 19 living in Mt. Vernon, NY with his mother, father and two younger sisters. His occupation was coded as "machinist."

He was registered for the draft on June 5, 1917, below. He and his wife lived in Brooklyn, NY. Interestingly, his registration identified him as an alien. In fact, according to the 1920 U.S. Census, he immigrated to the U.S. in 1899 and was naturalized in 1911. We learn that, at age 27, he was medium height and build, with grey eyes and brown hair.

J.V. Sandblom, Draft Registration, June 5, 1917 (Source: ancestry.com)
J.V. Sandblom, Draft Registration, June 5, 1917 (Source: ancestry.com)

As with many things, the details are in the fine print. If you look carefully at the diagonal printing at the lower left of this card, the text says, "If person is of African descent, tear off this corner." Some things change; some things remain the same.

His occupation on his draft registration was cited as "Mechanic" at the American Parlograph Corporation. The company, with corporate offices in downtown New York City, made dictating machines like the one below, left. The man was unidentified.

San Mateo Times (CA), January 30, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)
San Mateo Times (CA), January 30, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)
American Parlaphone Dictating Machine, Ca. 1915 (Source: Web)
American Parlaphone Dictating Machine, Ca. 1915 (Source: Web)

Sandblom moved across the country sometime during the next decade. He also was married on April 28, 1917 to Helen Agnes Derer. The 1920 Census placed him living in Venice, CA with Helen. His occupation in Venice was coded as "Proprietor" of an amusement device company.

He moved again and took up new work. The Santa Monica city directory for 1925 listed him and Helen living at 1008 Stracey Avenue, Venice. That address today appears to be at the rear of a school that has pre-fab auxilliary classrooms installed on the property. His occupation was documented as "Mechanic."

"J.V. Sandblum" [sic], Altoona Tribune (PA), February 5, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)
"J.V. Sandblum" [sic], Altoona Tribune (PA), February 5, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)

 

 

The 1930 Census placed him (age 39) living at 1315 West 81st St., Los Angeles, CA. This Census listed his birthplace as New York, in contrast to his draft registration, above, that listed Sweden as his birthplace.

Regardless, he owned his home, which was valued at $7,650. He lived with his wife, Helen (38; immigrated from Ireland in 1914, and a naturalized U.S. citizen) and their daughter, Helen Audrene (6; 1922-1991). They had been married 14 years.

His occupation was coded as "Pilot" at an "Airplane Field." With over 4,000 flight hours logged, he was commonly respected for being one of the most experienced pilots on the west coast.

Sandblom appeared in no other Registers, probably because he lost his life early in an air transport crash. In July 1931, Sandblom began working for the newly formed Century-Pacific Airlines. Century-Pacific was organized by Albuquerque, NM (Oxnard Field) Register pilot E.L. Cord. The initial airplanes purchased for the line were Stinson model SM-6000 trimotors. The Century-Pacific Stinsons are logged numerous times in the Grand Central Air Terminal Register (see, e.g. NC10844). The one that Sandblom crashed was NC10813.

Sandblom's trimotor was lost on a regularly scheduled flight on January 29, 1932. His plane went down in rugged terrain between Bakersfield and Los Angeles, CA.

Sedalia Weekly Democrat (MO), February 5, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)
Sedalia Weekly Democrat (MO), February 5, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)

 

 

Sandblom carried seven passengers. His accident, from the time when the airplane went missing until the wreckage was found and bodies recovered, made national headlines, from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (NY) to the San Mateo Times (CA). His photograph above was from one of the articles that appeared in Pennsylvania. The San Mateo Times (CA), January 30, 1932, above right, documented the loss a day after the airplane went missing.

The Sedalia Weekly Democrat (MO), February 5, 1932, left, documented the discovery of the aircraft and the people onboard. Foul weather, including a blizzard, hampered the search efforts.

Below, a photograph from the Rhinelander Daily News (WI), February 8, 1932 shows Sandblom and the aftermath of the crash.

Rhinelander Daily News (WI), February 8, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)
Rhinelander Daily News (WI), February 8, 1932 (Source: newspapers.com)

Helen remarried sometime before 1935 to Fred Frieble. The 1940 Census placed them living in Los Angeles with daughter Helen (16).

 

 

 

 

 

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