The story of Wright Field, Dayton, Ohio, home of the U.S.A.A.F. Material Command, and during WWII the largest aeronautical research center in the world. This WWII film shows the various ways Material Command assists in the design, production and testing of military aircraft and components.
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base's origins begin with the establishment of Wilbur Wright Field on 22 May and McCook Field in November 1917, both established by the Army Air Service as World War I installations. McCook was used as a testing field and for aviation experiments. Wright was used as a flying field (renamed Patterson Field in 1931); Fairfield Aviation General Supply Depot; armorers’ school, and a temporary storage depot. McCook's functions were transferred to Wright Field when it was closed in October 1927.
In February 1940 at Wright Field, the Army Air Corps established the Technical Data Branch. After Air Corps Ferrying Command was established on 29 May 1941, on 21 June an installation point of the command opened at Patterson Field. In the fall of 1942, the first twelve "Air Force" officers to receive AT field collection training were assigned to Wright Field for training in the technical aspects of "crash" intelligence (RAF Squadron Leader Colley identified how to obtain information from equipment marking plates and squadron markings. In July 1944 during the Robot Blitz, Wright Field fired a reconstructed German pulse-jet engine (an entire V-1 flying bomb was "reversed engineered" by September 8 at Republic Aviation.) The first German and Japanese aircraft arrived in 1943, and captured equipment soon filled six buildings, a large outdoor storage area, and part of a flight-line hangar for Technical Data Lab study. The World War II Operation Lusty returned 86 German aircraft to Wright Field for study, e.g., the Messerschmitt 262 jet fighter, while the post-war Operation Paperclip brought German scientists and technicians to Wright Field, e.g., Ernst R. G. Eckert (most of the scientists eventually went to work in the various Wright Field labs.)