Filed Under Lewistown

Training Building

Lewistown Satellite Airfield Historic District

During World War II, many aircrews came to Lewistown for the final phase of their training. Here they logged an average eight hours of ground school for every hour of flying time. In this building the men studied aircraft identification, learned first aid and emergency procedures, listened to veteran combat pilots’ experiences, and viewed government training films featuring stars like Ronald Reagan and Allan Ladd. The building also housed three Link Trainers, fully equipped simulated cockpits. Edwin A. Link invented the first simulator in 1928 to lessen expensive flying time while students learned visual skills on the ground. After U.S. airmail planes suffered a series of crashes in 1934, the Army Air Corps began requiring all pilots to take Link training. On the trainers, pilots learned to rely on instruments while flying. The Japanese Imperial Navy also used the Link Trainer, which meant that pilots on both sides of the conflict trained to fight each other using the same system. Most other airbase buildings had outside facilities, but because the men spent so much time here, the training building had its own inside restroom.

Images

Training Building Training Building. Rear to side view of the building, facing northwest. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: James Rea Date: Nov. 2003
Training Building Training Building. Front to side view of the building, facing southeast. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: James Rea Date: Nov. 2003

Location

Lewistown Municipal Airport, Lewistown, Montana | Private

Metadata

The Montana National Register Sign Program, “Training Building,” Historic Montana, accessed December 3, 2022, https://historicmt.org/items/show/379.