Ft. Lauderdale Historic Society

219 S.W. 2nd Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

PRESERVING THE PAST: In 1962 dedicated volunteers started the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society. They felt committed to preserving the story of the past for future generations. They preserved photographs, documents, maps and other artifacts. Today the Society is working hard to preserve the few buildings remaining that comprise the historical center of the community, Old Fort Lauderdale: the ca.1905 New River Inn; the ca.1907 King Cromartie House; the ca.1905 Philemon Bryan House; the 1899 replica schoolhouse and the Society's current headquarters and future research facility. To contribute to this effort, contact Dan Hobby, Executive Director ext 15.

PRESENTING THE STORY: Educational programs for schools, agencies, and organizations can be arranged at Old Fort Lauderdale or your site. The story goes on and so does the commitment. Call Laurie-Lynn Jones, Education Director, ext 12, for more information.

PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE: New exhibits are under development to tell the story of the city that grew from this spot where the railroad crossed the river. New additions to the collection are always welcome. Call Susan Gillis, Curator of Collections, ext 13,to offer your donations.

Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale Historic Association

This Association is dedicated to preserving the history and memory of Naval Air Station NAS) Fort Lauderdale (presently the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport), as well as the Naval Air Station Boat Facility, the Fort Lauderdale Navy Section Base, and the Fort Lauderdale Coast Guard Station, which were located in Port Everglades during the period: 1942-1946.

Over the past several years, Broward County has destroyed most of the buildings that housed NAS Fort Lauderdale during World War IL

The primary mission of the Association is to collect arid preserve information, documents, and memorabilia that were associated with the NAS Fort Lauderdale and to place these items in a small museum for the education of the general public and students as well as visitors who served in this area during World War II, about the very important role that the Greater Fort Lauderdale, Florida area performed for the United States of America during World War 11 and to provide an environment of camaraderie for the common good of the community for the future.

During 1942 the Merle Fogg Airport in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, was selected by the United States Navy to be improved into a naval aviation facility for training naval aviators during World War II.

The naval aviation training command made NAS Fort Lauderdale into a training facility for naval aviators, supporting aircrew personnel, and ground maintenance personnel on the Grumman designed TBF/TBM Avenger single engine torpedo bomber carrier - based airplane.

Training was very strenuous and difficult. Many instructors were assigned right from aviator training in Pensacola, Florida, after being awarded their pilot wings and so had little practical experience in the beginning. Some instructors had limited experience in training pilot students, which helped the program greatly in the initial phases. In 1943, Ensign George H. W. Bush, USNR was fortunate to have Lieutenant Tex Ellison, USN for his instructor. Lieutenant Ellison had just returned from combat in the Pacific theater when he was assigned to be Ensign Bush's instructor.

During World War II, 1942 through 1945, ninety-four service members lost their lives while serving at NAS Fort Lauderdale, including fourteen on 5 December 1945 when 5 TBM Avenger aircraft disappeared as US Navy flight19 while on a navigation training mission over the Atlantic Ocean from NAS Fort Lauderdale.

Late in 1946, the Navy closed NAS Fort Lauderdale, at which time Broward County assumed control of the property and started development of the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, one of the finest commercial airline terminals in the United States today.

On October 3, 1992, President George Bush visited the site and was awarded the first honorary membership in the NAS Fort Lauderdale Historical Association.

For information Contact:

Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale
Historical Association
P.O. Drawer 70488
Fort Lauderdale, Fl. 33307-0488
Phone (954)359-4400
FAX (954)359-4409


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