This Week’s Kent County History Quiz Question: Why was the Massey Aerodrome developed?
A. Provide local travelers access to easy connections to major airports.
B. Create an air freight hub for the Eastern Shore.
C. Create a grass runway public airfield to preserve the small town airport traditions of the 1930s-1950s.
D. None of the above.
This Week’s Answer: C. Preservation of small town airport traditions.
About twenty years ago (in 2000), a dream came true. Four friends who loved to fly and wanted to preserve the world of flight’s fascinating history purchased 97 acres of farmland near Massey, MD, and established the Massey Aerodrome. The Massey Air Museum was initiated about two years later.
Sheeler Field near Chestertown had closed in 1996 and the pilots wanted to be airborne, so they solved their dilemma plus added a preservation effort. They also built enough hangars to offer rental space, which has helped to make operations self-sufficient. The complex is open Tuesday through Sunday from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. and managed with a team of dedicated volunteers–no paid staff.
They are categorized as a public use airfield. This allows any plane to fly in that can manage take-off and landing on their 3,000-foot by 100-foot airstrip. They follow Federal Aviation Administration regulations. The term “aerodrome” means an area where flight operations take place, but guarantees no services and/or facilities.
The museum has a wide variety of interesting vintage aircraft on view. The large plane painted military olive green seen on arrival is a 1937 DC-3 that visitors can actually tour. That aircraft was featured in the 1938 movie “Test Pilot” which starred Clark Gable, Myrna Loy and Spencer Tracy and featured Lionel Barrymore.
A self-guided tour has been laid out and scheduled tours are available during regular hours; however, well-informed personnel are onsite every day and, if available, will guide visitors through the collection. There is no entrance fee, but a $5 donation is welcomed.
Bi-plane rides are available seasonally and glider rides are available “anytime.”
The owners of the Aerodrome have made the spacious grounds available for staging local events.
The Massey Aerodrome and Museum is located at 33541 Maryland Line Road, Massey, Maryland 21650.
PLEASE NOTE: The popular Galena Lions Club Car Show scheduled for this Sunday, November 1, has JUST BEEN POSTPONED to Sunday, November 8. Come out and enjoy the array of unique Antique cars to Hot Rods. Open from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Car Entry Fee: $20.00. Visitors pay no admission. For more information on show call: 410-708-4889 or 410-648-5070
The Kent County History Quiz is a weekly local brainteaser sponsored by The Peoples Bank. Kent County historian and author Joan Horsey and columnist Kate Meehan contribute to the quiz’s development. Our goal is to create an opportunity for local learning and discussion. If you have a quiz idea, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.