Behind Every Airport is a Story
When Charles Lindbergh visited South Carolina on his tour of the 48 states following his historic Atlantic crossing in 1927, he came to Spartanburg for the simple reason that it was, at the time, the only airport in the state.
World War 1
Local Spartanburg Aviators go to fight in France in 1917
Local WW1 Ace Bob Cates who, in 1920, suggested to the Spartanburg City Council that the city should build an airport
The Council readily agreed—and put Cates in charge of the undertaking.
Oct 12th 1927
Charles Lindberg visits Spartanburg
May 1st 1928
First commercial airport in South Carolina with Air Mail delivery
1st Air wedding in South Carolina. Robert Turner, marries Doris Bell in Ford Tri-Motor Airplane
over the Spartanburg
Spartanburg Airport Control tower is closed after Air Traffic Controller Union Strike
May 29th 1928
Airport dedicated as a Memorial airport
1932 thru 1950's
Southern Airways, Piedmont Airways, Eastern and Delta Airlines operate out of Spartanburg
An Instrument Landing System is added to the airport, which enables pilots to conduct an instrument approach to landing if they are unable to establish visual contact with the runway.
Nov 14th 1931
Amelia Earhart visited the area and Spartanburg Airport
Nearby GSP Airport opens. Spartanburg becomes a General Aviation Airport
The airport underwent a $4.4 million transformation with renovations to the terminal building and two new units of T-hangars.
Eastern Airlines begins to operate out of Spartanburg
The 1970s brought explosive growth in the population of pilots and airplanes as well.
Completion of a $30.5 million runway project. The runway was extended by 650 feet bringing the total length to nearly 6,000 feet.