Apr 26 2012

The Long Island Aviation County Club, the Motor Parkway and a Hangar

One of the first private country club airfields in the United States was built on 200 acres abutting the north side of the Long Island Motor Parkway in the Hempstead Plains.

Here are some of my favorite related images.


Howard Kroplick



The club was officially call the Aviation Club of Long Island and opened in 1929. The area was then considered Hicksville. Today it is in the middle of Levittown. Members of the club including the flying elite of Long Island. Their 1940 club membership book listed; Col. Charles Lindbergh, Sherman Fairchild, L.R. (Leroy Randle) Grumman and several DuPonts. As described in the biography: Anne Morrow Lindbergh: Between the Sea and Stars, Charles Lindbergh taught his wife how to fly at the Long Island Aviation Country Club This 1932 map shows the location of the country club. This early 1930s aerial looking east shows the Long Island Aviation Country Club (left in the middle) and its relationship to the Motor Parkway. The Jerusalem Avenue Motor Parkway Bridge can be seen just east of the club. A closer look of this aerial reveals the club's hangar, clubhouse, swimming pool and tennis court which were located in the same place as the Vanderbilt Cup Race press box and officials' stand (1908-1910). Even more fascinating, looking across the Motor Parkway, you can see the outline of a long-abandoned road that was used to reach the grandstand. The remnants of the race "pits" are visible as the long rectangular black box slightly to the west. The Motor Parkway can be seen to the south of the airfield. A gathering of flying enthusiasts at the Long Island Aviation Club for an annual air show. Among the members was William K. Vanderbilt Jr. In the 1930s, the club requested permission to open an entrance to the adjacent parkway. To their surprise and dismay, Vanderbilt refused, not wanting to set a precedent. The airfield closed in May 1948 when the property was sold to William Levitt for his mass housing development Levittown. The two large hangars of the club can be seen in the background. The hangars were taken down in the late 1940s by Levitt. One of the hangar's roof was reassembled for a new building in Bethpage to manufacture pre-fabricated sections of the Levitt homes. It later served as a perfume factory, then a pickle works, a tuxedo warehouse and a sail manufacturing facility. The building is still standing today at the corner of Revere Avenue and Lexington Avenue in Bethpage. A 2012 Bing Maps "bird's-eye" view of the hangar roof. Neat!

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Apr 28 2012 Tim Ivers 9:21 AM

The 1932 Hagstrom Map shows an overpass over the LIMP (Bloomingdale Road extension) which connected with Hempstead Tpke.  The overpass is about halfway between Jerusalem Avenue on the west and Wantagh Rd (Ave.) on the east.
Are there any known photos of this overpass, or other information?

May 01 2012 Joseph (Motorpky) Debono 6:08 AM

Howard, Some of the club house buildings are still standing in another place in Hicksville, At lease ten years ago, they were.They moved them many years ago. Take care Howard, Good job       Joseph(motorpky)DeBono

Jun 23 2012 Desmond McGlynn 12:30 AM


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