Dr. Erik D. Carlson, coordinator of Special Collections at The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) McDermott Library, will reveal little-known facts and show historic photographs of the 1918 Love Field Airdrome show in a free public lecture on Wednesday, June 22, beginning at 2 p.m. The lecture will be held in the McDermott Library Auditorium on the UTD campus.
Carlson’s presentation, titled “The Flyin’ Frolic: U.S. Military Aviation, Love Field and the End of World War I,” is free and open to the public. A reception will immediately follow in the Special Collections Department on the third floor of the library.
“I thought it would be fun to start with Love Field in a series of presentations about North Texas military pilot training fields of 1918 ,” Carlson said. “UTD’s History of Aviation Collection here at the McDermott Library contains some very impressive collections about World War I military aviation.”
The so-called “Flyin’ Frolic” was held Nov. 12-13, 1918, and featured a world-record parachute jump, a radio telephone (wireless), the “Tail Spin Cabaret” with 200 dancing girls, Midway Mirth, the Camp Dick (Fair Park) Jazz Band, the Aviation Repair Depot Band, Maud The Freak Donkey, Aerial Combat, fireworks and a Dry-Land Boat Race. The “gorgeous air pageant” attracted between 80,000 and 100,000 people on its final afternoon and created automobile traffic jams, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Carlson plans other lectures in the series about airfields in Fort Worth and Wichita Falls. Carlson, who earned a Ph.D. in history from Texas Tech University in 1996, has been coordinator of Special Collections at the library since August 2000.
For more information on the lecture, please contact Tom Koch at 972-883-4951.