Vital Part of the Community
Anderson Municipal Airport has come a long way. The airport has seen both ups and downs in its 70 years of existence, but there is one thing that will never change. The airport has always played a vital role in Anderson’s economic and community development and it will continue to be a significant part of the community in the future.
The original Anderson Airport was started in 1938, as nothing more than just a grass landing strip located on a farm on the south side of town where Applewood shopping center, near I-69, exit 26, now sits. Almost all of the airports back then were privately owned and operated, and most of them were built mainly for the barnstormers.
The Anderson Airport moved to its present location, on State Road 32 on Anderson’s far east side near Chesterfield, largely due to an increasing demand by General Motors for a larger and more efficient airport. Approximately 200 people, composed of city and county officials, business and community leaders, as well as interested citizens, gathered at the new airport site for groundbreaking ceremonies on March 3, 1959.
Ten months later, on January 16, 1960, the first plane, from the old Anderson Airport, landed on the new strip at the Anderson Municipal Airport. The construction of the new airport cost approximately $300,000 in federal funds, local tax money, and private contributions from corporations and citizens.
An estimated crowd of over 15,000 attended the formal dedication ceremony of the new Anderson Municipal Airport on July 3, 1960. Flight demonstrations of a 1912 model pusher plane and the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels topped the dedication ceremony.
The Anderson Airport became publicly owned when the new airport was built. The Anderson Municipal Airport - Darlington Field continues to be an economic development engine and a vital gateway to the City of Anderson.