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Do you have any information about an airfield that was near where Independence Mall is now?

Si Cantwell

A crowd views bi-planes during the early development of the airport. 1928 photo from the Louis T. Moore Collection, courtesy of the New Hanover County Public Library.

Q. I have seen in previous columns that there was once an airfield near where Independence Mall exists. Do you have any information about the airfield or any others in the Wilmington area?

A. After researching records at Wilmington International Airport, Director Jon Rosborough said that in the early 1920s, aviation enthusiasts and military planes flew from an air strip which was located between what is now Floral Parkway and Audubon Boulevard.

By 1925, construction of the Wilmington to Wrightsville Beach Highway (now Oleander Drive) cut across a large section of the runway’s southern end, he said.

In 1926 a tract of county-owned land three miles northeast of the city on Gordon Road was proposed for a new landing field. This site was reported to be 50 to 70 acres between Gordon Road and Smith Creek. The first landing on the field was made in 1927, Rosborough said.

“This landing field expanded and eventually developed to where ILM is currently located,” he said.

Do you have information about others of the small airfields that were once dotted around the area?. If so, post your comments below.


Was there ever an airplane landing strip in Seagate? 

What’s the history of Pilots Ridge airport?

User-contributed question by:
John Mahoney

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4 Responses to “ Do you have any information about an airfield that was near where Independence Mall is now?”

  1. On June 14, 2012 at 4:31 pm Stanley Outlaw wrote:

    As late as 1949 county maps show the airport in what is now Lincoln Forest. It was operated into the early 50s I believe.

  2. On June 15, 2012 at 7:15 am Gene wrote:

    If I remember correctly, there is a framed historic picture located in the dining area of Kentucky Fried Chicken in Odgen that shows the “old” Winter Park area. Its also shows the area where the mall is now located with detail as to the airport name, runway orientation etc.

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