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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Putnam County Airport history captured in new museum exhibit

Friday, September 14, 2012

A historical exhibit representing the importance of Putnam County in the field of aviation is now on display at the Putnam County Museum.

The exhibit, compiled in honor of the recent Airport Appreciation Days, highlights the establishment of the Putnam County Airport by following the narratives of some of Putnam County's most famous flyers. A portion of the exhibit remains at the local airport through the end of September.

The famous "Flying Aces" of World War I and World War II from Putnam County influenced the history of aviation with a prestigious and glorious honor.

Other famous pilots on exhibit include Alexander Vraciu, Col. Harvey Weir Cook, and Lt. Maurice Sharp. The exhibit emphasizes their historical contributions but also the popularity of aero science for the general Greencastle population.

The Putnam County Airport has not only served a practical purpose, like receiving former President Bill Clinton last year, but also has been a source of entertainment for community spectators for many decades.

Lt. Sharp, for example, is best remembered for his aerial performances with his Curtis biplane. Similarly, Sharp became first aviator to land an aircraft in Greencastle on Sept. 29, 1918.

Many involved with the airport through the years have donated artifacts that represent the airport's history. The exhibit displays objects ranging from old-fashioned plane propellers to airplane replicas to actual aerial footage. A number of exhibited photographs, news clippings and even telegrams communicate the personal narratives that design Putnam County's aerial history.

The museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 1-4 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. It is located at 1105 N. Jackson St. in Greencastle.

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