Pearson Field History


Pearson Field is the oldest operating airfield in the Pacific NW and one of the two oldest continuously operating airfields in the United States, receiving recognition in 2012 as an American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) historic aerospace site. Pearson Field dates back to Lincoln Beachey’s landing of the Dirigible Gelatine in 1905. The army operated a spruce mill for aircraft parts during WWI. Regular army flights at Pearson Field began in 1921 with the opening of a forest patrol base. Reserve fliers from the 321st Observation Squadron trained from 1923 until the squadron was placed on active service in 1941. The year 1937 saw the landing of the first non-stop transpolar flight by the Russian ANT-25. The field continues to serve the region as a vital general aviation center while the aviation education center serves the important roles of preserving the field’s rich aviation heritage and educating all ages in general aviation.

pearson fighters004

russians at pearson

Click below for interesting stories of historic people and events at Pearson Field

Abandoned and Little Known Airfields in the U.S. (an interesting list that has historic significance)

The Stories of One Place Across Time
A Brief History of Pearson Field
AIAA Monument installed on site
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics: Historic Aerospace Site, Pearson Field, Vancouver, Washington
Lt. Alexander Pearson

Lincoln Beachey
Silas Christofferson
DT-2 Douglas World Cruiser
Edith "Edie" Foltz Stearns
Leah Hing
Oakley G. Kelly
Charles Lindbergh
Pearson Air Field
Pearson Hangar
Tex Rankin
1937 Transpolar Flight