Holt, Abdon F

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Abdon F. Holt, among the first pilots in Lubbock, discusses the history of aviation in the area from the 1920s to the 1940s, particularly the changes caused by World War II, and includes some facts on his personal flying history.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Abdon F. Holt

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: June 13, 1969; July 1970

Location: Lubbock, Texas

Interviewer: Jimmy Skaggs

Length: 2 hours, 5 minutes


Tape 1, Side 1: Autobiographical data given, Family background, Education summarized, Remembers places of employment, Explains making ice using steam, Came to Lubbock to form an ice company (1925), Stayed in operation until retirement 5 years ago, Leading businessmen named, Remembers early Texas Tech and faculty, Description of attempt to sell Lubbock airport (1934), Early airport described, Change in public’s attitude toward flying, Instructed pilots during World War II, Requirements of getting a pilot’s license in 1932, Remembers early planes, Early pilots named.

Tape 1, Side 2: Discussion of early pilots (continued), Crop dusting discussed, Trips to pick up new airplanes mentioned, Talks about early guidance systems and radios, Further discussion of early Lubbock Municipal Airport, Early commercial air service recalled, Reasons for Lubbock’s growth cited.

Tape 2, Side 1: Biographical information related, Notes early interest in flying, Beginnings of flying in Lubbock, Lindburgh’s flight aroused interest, Flying club organized (1928), Construction of the first airport recalled, Texas Air Transport Company mentioned, Clint Breedlove became airport manager (1931), Planes being used in the 1930s described, Cost of flying was high, Private airport opened in Lubbock (1931), Obtained his license there (1932), Bought an old plane (1933), Improvements in planes and equipment in the 1930s described, Switch of mail delivery from private planes to Air Force explained, Disastrous results noted, Quickly returned to private airlines, Reorganization of the Lubbock airport revealed, Helped survey other airports, Airport Board set up with Holt as chairman.

Tape 2, Side 2: Lubbock airport’s development (continued), Appointed to state advisory commission on aviation, Building of new runways recalled, Flying schools organized in Lubbock, Effects of World War II on aviation, Schools converted to military pilot training, Cites Lubbock’s efforts to get an Air Force pilot training school, Lubbock Army Air Field established, Taught flying to military recruits, Planes furnished by Air Force described.

Tape 3, Side 1: Growth of Lubbock’s airport discussed, Conversion back to civilian use, Resigned from Airport Board, Terminal building built, Ed Colby hired as manager, Passenger service began, Returned to Airport Board, Pilot training in Lubbock during World War II recalled, Lists planes which he has owned.

Tape 3, Side 2: Blank

Range Dates: 1925-1950

Bulk Dates: 1925-1945

Access Information

Original Recording Format:

Recording Format Notes:



Note: A complete transcript of Tapes 2 and 3 appear in Appendix A of the Texas Tech University M. A. Thesis in History of Mrs. Martha Ann Donelson Tomlinson entitled "Aviation in Lubbock, 1925-1941," pp. 186-199. A copy is housed in the Southwest Collection (see http://hdl.handle.net/2346/17736)

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