Friday, June 9, 2017

Did you know?

Archie Delwood Mitchell is a familiar name in the annals of Ontario History. A native son, born January 18, 1891, Mitchell has been dubbed the “Father of the Ontario International Airport.” Professionally, he devoted his career to civil service, serving two terms as Ontario’s city attorney, and 24 years as judge of the San Bernardino Superior Court. His interest in flying was sparked while a Los Angeles airshow in 1910. After graduating from USC School of Law in 1912, he acted as Ontario’s City Attorney from 1914-1916. At that time, he requested a leave of absence in order to fulfill his military obligation as a member of the Navy Flying Corps. The war ended before he could earn his wings; however, his enthusiasm for aviation did not wane. In 1923, Mitchell and noted aviator, Waldo Waterman, leased a mile long strip of land known as Latimer Field and established the Ontario Aircraft Corporation, flying passengers in their Curtiss JN-4 “Jenny” aircraft. Mitchell resumed his career as City Attorney from 1937-1947. In 1941, due in large part to his persistence, the city authorized the purchase of 70 acres of land to establish a municipal airport. The field was used as a training facility during the World War II, and eventually became an international airport in 1946.

Post content and Photo credit: Model Colony History Room. #HistoricalWednesday #CityofOntario
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