During World War II the US government established military airfields around northern California including a number at places such as Orland, Oroville, Redding, Siskiyou County, Marysville, Santa Rosa and Novato. Novice pilots trained in hastily-constructed planes over Lake County, which led to emergency landings and crashes in Lake County. In those days Lake County had a number of small airfields scattered around, such as Polk Field near Upper Lake. Planes from both the army and the navy crashed in Lake County. Some crashes in Sonoma and Mendocino Counties involved Lake County. When Pan Am’s Philippine Clipper crashed in Mendocino County in 1943, searchers looked for it in Lake County because its location wasn’t found for several days. Some Lake County men were involved in the search.
Article by Jan Cook
Jan Cook is a library technician for the Lake County Library where she has worked since 1989. She wears a multitude of library hats, including the one for answering Lake County genealogy and history questions. Jan belongs to the Lake County Genealogical Society, the Lake County Historical Society and the Ladies of the Lake Quilt Guild. She designed Lakeport Library’s Quilt Trail block, Friends of the Library. One of her favorite library jobs is doing research in the old newspapers.