Airway Beacons: Rehabilitation and Interpretation

Author(s): Erin Brown; Linda Popelish; Steve Owen

Year: 2016


Early airway beacons, which marked transcontinental flyways, may not be what you first think of when you see the term archaeology but they are a part of our broader history as a nation, and as historic structures or sites can be eligible for the National Register. In order to preserve a key piece of recent national history, two Passport in Time projects on the Mt. Taylor Ranger District of the Cibola National Forest focused on airway beacon sites. The partnership between the Forest Service and a corps of dedicated Passport in Time volunteers sparked an interest in aviation history that unexpectedly took a firm hold in the small New Mexico community of Grants. The Cibola County Historical Society has worked diligently for the past 3 years to build on the initial PIT achievements, and continues to do so. The key structure, a federal flight service station, has recently been listed on both the State and National Registers. Other accomplishments include the recording of multiple beacon locations, the rehabilitation of 2 beacon generator sheds, and the creation of an interpretive site at the Grants-Milan Airport where a small part of aviation history lives on.

Cite this Record

Airway Beacons: Rehabilitation and Interpretation. Erin Brown, Linda Popelish, Steve Owen. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404005)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -115.532; min lat: 30.676 ; max long: -102.349; max lat: 42.033 ;