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There is no biographical file for pilot Van De Mark in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum (NASM), Washington, DC.

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Your copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register with all the pilots' signatures and helpful cross-references to pilots and their aircraft is available at the link. Or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author. ISBN 978-0-9843074-0-1.

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http://www.cafepress.com/content/global/img/spacer.gifThe Congress of Ghosts is an anniversary celebration for 2010.  It is an historical biography, that celebrates the 5th year online of www.dmairfield.org and the 10th year of effort on the project dedicated to analyze and exhibit the history embodied in the Register of the Davis-Monthan Airfield, Tucson, AZ. This book includes over thirty people, aircraft and events that swirled through Tucson between 1925 and 1936. It includes across 277 pages previously unpublished photographs and texts, and facsimiles of personal letters, diaries and military orders. Order your copy at the link, or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author.  ISBN 978-0-9843074-4-9.

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ALLAN VAN DE MARK

Allan Van De Mark, Date Unknown (Source: Pfrang)
Allan Van De Mark, Date Unknown (Source: Pfrang)

 

Allan Van De Mark landed at Tucson Wednesday, February 25, 1931.  He carried three passengers, Mr. & Mrs. William H. Lee and their son.  They flew in the Lockheed Vega NC858E. Please direct your browser to the airplane's link to learn about this well-used craft with a distinguished and varied history. Van De Mark and passengers were westbound from Amarillo, TX to Los Angeles, CA.  Portrait, right, clipped from the photograph below.

Van De Mark's home base was identified as "Lee-Van DeMark," which was written in the home base column of the Register. This airfield was located in Lockport, NY. Please direct your browser to that page to see the exact location and learn the history of the airfield. A "Bob" Lee was eventually the operator of the airport before it closed in 1988. He could be the son of William carried in the Vega in 1931.

Van De Mark was an officer of the Niagara Baking Company and was an early adopter of aviation in support of business. He, along with fellow Register signers E.W. "Pop" Cleveland, Harry Culver and Tom Colby among others, used aircraft to expedite their businesses.

An example of his combining business with flying follows in this quote from the Niagara County (NY) Bicentennial held in 2008.

"By 1930, Mr. Van DeMark [sic] had purchased a Ryan Brougham monoplane that would carry four passengers besides the pilot and was equipped with a Wright Whirlwind motor capable of maintaining a speed of 110-130 mph. The story is told that Mr. Van DeMark strived to make lemonade when handed lemons, and sometimes combined business with pleasure if the right circumstances arouse [sic]. Such was the case when he was called upon to use his new plane to make its first commercial delivery of baked goods. It would seem that an Albion baker was unable to get out a special order of muffins in time for the Albion Ad Club dinner and a “rush” order was placed with Niagara Baking. Van DeMark, always up to the task, put muffins in hand and took to the air. After circling over Albion twice he landed the plane in a field and rushed the muffins to a waiting automobile that delivered them for the dinner, just in time. It must have been his 'can-do' spirit that later flew Van DeMark into the forefront of community life as Mayor of Lockport in 1937."

Below, courtesy of site visitor Joel Pfrang, is a clear photograph of pilot Van De Mark with the Ryan B-1 Brougham NC3845 (S/N 58; not a Register airplane) cited above. Van De Mark poses with his arm resting on one of the landing gear support struts. The fuselage bears the name of his business. Below the registration number on the rudder is painted "DOUGHBOY," the name given to the airplane.

Allan Van De Mark's Ryan, NC3854, Ca. 1930, Location Unknown (Source: Pfrang)
Allan Van De Mark's Ryan, NC3854, Ca. 1930, Location Unknown (Source: Pfrang)

Note that the airplane has a modern tail wheel rather than a skid. The accordian doors are unique among the hangars pictured on this site. From the state of the windsock, there was a stiff breeze blowing that day.

I have no other information regarding pilot Van De Mark. If you can help, please let me KNOW.

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THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 07/10/12 REVISED:

 
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I'm looking for information and photographs of pilot Van De Mark and his airplane to include on this page. If you have some you'd like to share, please click this FORM to contact me.
Thanks to site visitor Joel Pfrang for sharing the photograph of Van De Mark and "Doughboy."
 
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