About Us

The Golden Age

Tulsa's Golden Age

With the creation of the Tulsa Municipal Airport in 1928 Tulsa was on the aviation map. Charles W. Short, former WWI aviator was chosen as the manager and he invited everyone that was anyone in aviation to drop by his airport.

In 1928 the Ford Reliability Tour was slated to return to Tulsa with an anticipated larger tour than in 1927. The Ford front men told the city fathers that if they were to return Tulsa would have to build a real municipal airport that could handle the larger tour of 1928. Most of the Chamber of Commerce people were oil men and their leader was oil man W.G. Skelly. They formed a committee to choose a site for the new airport and began to lay out runways and build hangars.

The Ford Reliability Tour arrived on July 3 and Tulsa Municipal Airport was formally dedicated. Skelly began his Spartan Aircraft Company as well as his Spartan School of Aeronautics. Charlie Short began to record the people that went through the airport. In 1929 Tulsa was a stop on the First Womens Air Derby that Oklahoman Will Rogers dubbed, "The Powder Puff Derby", bringing such greats as Amelia Earhart, Louis Thaden, Mary Haizlip, Blanche Noyes and Phoebe Omlie, among others. By 1930 Tulsa Municipal Airport was purported to be the busiest airport in the world because of the oil boom.