Patuxent – Pictorial Patuxent (PDF)


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From deep forest, on rolling farm land in St. Mary’s County in Southern Maryland, the Navy has created the Naval Air Test Center where aircraft and aviation gear are tested. Long dreamed of by pilots and engineers of the Bureau of Aeronautics, the Test Center gives the Navy a place where all major testing is performed. Authorized only a few days after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U. S. Naval Air Station, Patuxent River, Maryland, was started when ground was broken in March 1942. It was commissioned 1 April 1943. The station is situated on a 6800-acre tract of land at the mouth of the Patuxent River and boasts a nine-mile coastline along the river and the protected waters of Chesapeake Bay. It has three conveniently located seaplane basins. There are three huge runways, including one 10,000 feet long, and a fourth runway under construction, and large hangars, shops, laboratories and many supporting activities. In addition to serving as the Navy’s Aviation Test Center, the air station is headquarters for the Atlantic Wing of the Naval Air Transport Service Command. Air Transport Squadrons, 1, 8, and 9, have been located here and Patuxent has served as the East Coast terminus for flights to England, Europe and South America. By direction of the Secretary of the Navy on 16 June 1945, the U. S. Naval Air Test Center was established at NAS, Patuxent River, Maryland to accomplish the program of tests, including coordination of supporting services and facilities. Testing the Navy’s planes and aeronautical equipment is Patuxent River’s mission. It is a task which all who have served here have assisted materially. This book, PICTORIAL PATUXENT, is a photographic record of Sailors, WAVES, Officers and civilians who helped win the war through their service here.