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August 5, 2014

Awesome Vintage Aviation Photos: The Mid-Atlantic

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Written by: John F. Ciesla
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(Editor’s note: Welcome to Time Travel Tuesday, a nine-part series celebrating the airports, airlines, and aircraft of yesteryear, through the vintage aviation photos of William J. Armstrong. In Part One and Part Two, we explored the airports of the Midwest, while Part Three explored the airports of the Western United States. Then we went international, with Canada in Part Four, and Europe in Part Five. Now we travel back to the United States and begin our march towards Bill’s home in New York City, starting with the Mid-Atlantic Airports.)

It is indeed an honor to introduce this series of aviation photos taken by my good friend William J. Armstrong. Our friendship spanned almost a half century, and blossomed because of our common interest in aviation. As time went on, we found common interests in many things, and at one time our professional careers crossed paths and I had the privilege of working with Bill.

We see Bill here because of his aviation photography, and he was among the few who would spend time at an airport for the sole purpose of taking photos of airplanes and observing operations. Bill began doing this during the late 1950s, and continued into the start of the Jet age. His photos are a look back in time, to when propellers were the order of the day, and when you walked across an often oil stained tarmac to your waiting plane. In those days, weather radar and instrument landing systems were the latest revolutionary developments in air travel.

Bill was interested in aviation, but in actuality if it moved he was interested. His knowledge of transportation systems, whether they traveled by rail, air, sea, or road, were legendary to his friends and fellow professionals. He also had keen interests in history, classical music, opera, swimming, travel, and the list goes on. He was a graduate of Columbia University, and Iona College with a masters degree. But for all his varied interests, Bill was always a humble person, never once forgetting the friends he met along the way.

Click to enlarge photos

Norfolk International Airport (ORF)

A Piedmont Airlines 737-200 is parked at its gate in Norfolk.

A Piedmont Airlines 737-200 is parked at its gate in Norfolk.

 

 

Harrisburg, PA (MDT)

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A Martin 2-0-2 operated by Allegheny Airlines taxiing to the gate.

 

Pittsburgh, PA (PIT)

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An Allegheny Airlines Martin 2-0-2 on the ramp in Pittsburgh in 1961.

 

Philadelphia, PA (PHL)

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United Airlines was the only US Carrier to order the Sud Aviation Caravelle.

 

Washington National Airport (DCA)

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An Eastern Airlines Martin 4-0-4 "Silver Falcon" at National Airport near Washington DC.

 

This collection was curated by NYCAviation Associate Editor Ben Granucci. All images are copyright John F. Ciesla, all rights reserved.



About the Author

John F. Ciesla





 
 

 

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  • Arik Katzenberg

    These pics are amazing