Interesting Wheeling

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Archive for the ‘Transportation’ Category

WHEELING AIRPORT?

Posted by ZaneMan on August 31, 2006

I chuckle when I see signs in downtown Wheeling pointing the way to the Wheeling Airport. I’ve never been there and no one else I know has either. But it is there, and President Bush’s plane landed there when he visited Wheeling recently. According to AirNav.com it has a respectable 5000 ft long runway. Of course, Pittsburgh’s longest is 11,500 ft, but if Air Force One can land here that’s long enough! The airport code is HLG – I don’t know why its not WLG.

The Wheeling Airport serves only corporate and other private aircraft, but is worth a visit because it has changed little since its 1946 founding. It has a compact museum of aviation items relating to the airport, including the chairs John and Jackie Kennedy used when he came here campaigning for president in 1960.

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AN AIRPLANE FACTORY?

Posted by ZaneMan on August 30, 2006

Yes. In nearby Glendale, there once was a factory that built the Fokker Tri-Motor aircraft. Thomas James’s well-illustrated website The Fokker Aircraft Legacy in West Virginia tells the story. Perhaps the most famous plane builder in the world at that time established a factory in Glendale in 1928 and produced 58 passenger planes before closing in 1931, a victim of the stock market crash and the crash of one of their planes carrying football hero Knute Rockne. The Glendale Fokker Field (airport) is still listed as active, and the grass runway curves around a gentle bend on the shore of the Ohio River. The factory buildings are still there – seems like its worth a little history tour!

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