Nielson Field

Nielson Field (Luzon, the Philippines) was the location of the U.S. Far East Air Force headquarters. Most of the aircraft of the U.S. Army Forces Far East were based at either Clark Field or Nichols Field.

Laurie Reuben Nielson

Laurie Reuben Nielson was one of the many foreigners attracted by the business opportunities in the Philippines and moved to the country before World War II. Born in New Zealand, Nielson and his American wife, Annette, arrived in Manila in the early to mid-1930s. He established himself in local business, setting up his own firm, L. R. Nielson & Co., and making inroads in the securities and stock brokerage business, importing, and mining. Nielson also sat on the board of The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation branch in Manila.

Nielson was an avid aviation enthusiast; with this, he became involved in a project to build an aviation school and airport in Manila. It was an ideal time for pursuing the project because there was a real need for an airport to support the increased economic activity in the country, especially in the mining industry, at the same time, the Quezon government was encouraging infrastructure projects. Nielson convinced several other Manila-based foreign investors to join him in the project and construction of the airport proceeded after the group leased 42 hectares of land in Makati from Ayala y Cia. When it was inaugurated in July 1937, the Nielson Airport was being touted as the biggest and best-equipped in Asia.

After the outbreak of the war and the invasion of Manila by Japanese forces in 1942, Nielson and his family were detained by the Japanese authorities. Nielson’s wife and two sons were brought to the internment camp at the University of Santo Tomas. Nielson, because he was British, was taken for internment in Hong Kong.

Nielson was never seen or heard from again. By the time the Philippines was liberated from the Japanese, Nielson’s businesses and most of his properties were all gone. After his wife and two sons left the Philippines and returned to the U.S. for good, Nielson’s only remaining legacy to the Philippines was the airport he had built.

Nielson Airport

Enlarge picture
Nielson Field in flames after a Japanese attack on December 10, 1941
The property on which the airport stood was part of the Hacienda San Pedro de Makati owned by the Spanish-Filipino Ayala family. The hacienda encompassed most of what is now the city of Makati. When Enrique Zobel de Ayala (1877–1943), then a senior managing partner at Ayala y Cia. and a special aide to President Manuel L. Quezon, found out about the Nielson group’s proposal to the government to build an airport on a turnkey basis, he immediately offered a portion of Hacienda San Pedro as a possible site for the facility. It was an ideal location for the airport because Makati was then just a sparsely populated town adjacent to Manila. The site was located on a hard tract of land jutting from rice fields, clearly visible from the air, allowing clear approaches from all sides.

The Nielson Airport became the base of the American Far Eastern School of Aviation. More importantly, with the introduction of commercial air services at the airport, it became the primary gateway between Manila and the rest of the country and, later, between the Philippines and the world. The Philippine Aerial Taxi Company (PATCO), the first airline company in the Philippines, and the Iloilo-Negros Air Express Company, the first Filipino-owned air service, started operating from the Nielson Airport. When Philippine Air Lines was established, its very first flight took off in March 1941 from the Nielson Airport for Baguio.

As a response to the expansionist policy of Japan, authorities in the Philippines set up the United States Far East Air Force (FEAF) headquarters at the Nielson Airport. Commercial flights at the airport were halted in October 1941 and the private carriers were asked to relocate their services to make room for the U.S. Army Air Corps.

When Japanese planes attacked the Philippines on 8 December 1941, the planes were actually spotted by a radar station in Northern Luzon, which immediately alerted the FEAF headquarters at Nielson. Unfortunately, by the time FEAF officers were finally able to get through to Clark Air Base in Pampanga, it was already too late and Japanese bombs were already dropping on Clark. By December 9, Nielson Airport was also under siege. After the Americans were forced to retreat from the Philippines and the Japanese occupation forces took over, the latter sequestered Nielson and turned the airport’s radio tower and passenger terminal into a headquarters. When Manila was liberated, the Americans were again able to wrest control of the airport from the Japanese. The partially damaged airport and its facilities were fully restored and commercial air services, including international flights, resumed in 1946.

In 1948, when the airport ceased operations in Makati to relocate elsewhere, ownership of the airport’s permanent facilities was passed on to the owner of the land, Ayala y Cia. Although the runways were eventually converted into roads (i.e., Paseo de Roxas and Ayala Avenue) and other airport structures were sacrificed to give way to the development of the Makati business and commercial district, the owners preserved the airport’s passenger terminal and control tower, which came to be known as the Nielson Tower.

Nielson Tower

In the succeeding years, various uses were found for the Nielson Tower, a two-story concrete structure designed to resemble an airplane from a bird’s-eye view. A t one point, it served as the headquarters of a police detachment. It also housed the offices of the Ayala-owned Integrated Property Management Corporation for several years. From the late 1970s up to April 1994, a group of Filipino investors leased the Nielson Tower and turned it into a semi-private, first-class club/restaurant. In 1996, after almost two years of renovation work, the Nielson Tower finally and officially became the permanent home of the Filipinas Heritage Library.

See also

Luzon<nowiki />

Map of the Philippines showing the island groups of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

Geography <nowiki/>
Location South East Asia <nowiki />
Archipelago
..... Click the link for more information.
Editing of this page by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled due to vandalism.
If you are prevented from editing this page, and you wish to make a change, please discuss changes on the talk page, request unprotection, log in, or .
..... Click the link for more information.
''For other usages see Far East Air Force (disambiguation)
The United States Far East Air Force (FEAF), later known as the Far East Air Forces, was formed on August 4, 1941 and was the predecessor of the current Pacific Air Forces of the United States Air
..... Click the link for more information.
USAFFE (United States Armed Forces in the Far East) included the Philippine Department, Philippine Army (2 regular and 10 reserve divisions), and the Far East Air Force (formerly, Philippine Army Air Corps). USAFFE Headquarters was created on July 26, 1941, at No.
..... Click the link for more information.
Clark Air Base is a former U.S. Air Force base on Luzon Island in the Philippines, now known as the Clark Special Economic Zone. It nestles against the northwest side of Angeles City and borders the municipality of Mabalacat in the province of Pampanga.
..... Click the link for more information.
Nichols Field was a former U.S. military airfield located south of Manila in Pasay City and Parañaque City, Metro Manila, Luzon, the Philippines. During the World War II era, it was the location of the Far East Air Force's U.S. 20th Air Base Group.
..... Click the link for more information.
Allied powers:
 Soviet Union
 United States
 United Kingdom
 China
 France
...et al. Axis powers:
 Germany
 Japan
 Italy
...et al.
..... Click the link for more information.
Anthem
"God Defend New Zealand"
"God Save the Queen" 1


Capital Wellington

Largest city Auckland
..... Click the link for more information.
The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited

Subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc
Founded 1865
Headquarters HSBC Main Building, Hong Kong SAR, China

Key people Vincent Cheng, Chairman
Sandy Flockhart, CEO
Industry Finance and Insurance
..... Click the link for more information.
Manuel Luis Quezon y Molina (b. August 19, 1878 in Baler, Aurora, Philippines - d. August 1, 1944 in Saranac Lake, New York, United States) was the first Filipino president of the Commonwealth of the Philippines under U.S. occupation rule in the early period of the 20th century.
..... Click the link for more information.
Ayala Corporation

Public (PSE: AC )
Founded Manila, The Philippines in 1834
Headquarters Makati City, The Philippines

Key people Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala II, Chairman and CEO
Fernando Zobel de Ayala, President and COO
Mercedita S.
..... Click the link for more information.
Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, The Catholic University of the Philippines (or simply the "University of Santo Tomas", "UST" or affectionately, "Ustê"), is a private Roman Catholic university run by the Order of Preachers in Manila.
..... Click the link for more information.
Motto
"Dieu et mon droit" [2]   (French)
"God and my right"
Anthem
"God Save the Queen" [3]
..... Click the link for more information.
Anthem
March of the Volunteers[1]



Capital None[2]
Largest district (population) Sha Tin District
..... Click the link for more information.
City of Makati
Lungsod ng Makati

Makati City and Rockwell Center with Makati CBD behind those buildings at night.
..... Click the link for more information.
PR ICAO
PAL Callsign
PHILIPPINE
Founded 1941
Hubs Ninoy Aquino International Airport
Mactan-Cebu International Airport
Frequent flyer program Mabuhay Miles
Member lounge Mabuhay Lounges
Fleet size 36 (+ 15 orders, 2 leases)
..... Click the link for more information.
Baguio City
Ciudad ti Baguio
Lungsod ng Baguio


Flag
Seal
Nickname: Summer Capital of the Philippines,
City of Pines

..... Click the link for more information.
Editing of this page by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled due to vandalism.
If you are prevented from editing this page, and you wish to make a change, please discuss changes on the talk page, request unprotection, log in, or .
..... Click the link for more information.
''For other usages see Far East Air Force (disambiguation)
The United States Far East Air Force (FEAF), later known as the Far East Air Forces, was formed on August 4, 1941 and was the predecessor of the current Pacific Air Forces of the United States Air
..... Click the link for more information.
The United States Air Corps (USAC) was the predecessor of the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) from 1926 to 1941, which in turn was the forerunner of today's United States Air Force (USAF).
..... Click the link for more information.
December 8 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

Events


..... Click the link for more information.
19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1910s  1920s  1930s  - 1940s -  1950s  1960s  1970s
1938 1939 1940 - 1941 - 1942 1943 1944

Year 1941 (MCMXLI
..... Click the link for more information.
Radar is a system that uses electromagnetic waves to identify the range, altitude, direction, or speed of both moving and fixed objects such as aircraft, ships, motor vehicles, weather formations, and terrain.
..... Click the link for more information.
Clark Air Base is a former U.S. Air Force base on Luzon Island in the Philippines, now known as the Clark Special Economic Zone. It nestles against the northwest side of Angeles City and borders the municipality of Mabalacat in the province of Pampanga.
..... Click the link for more information.

..... Click the link for more information.
December 9 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

Events


..... Click the link for more information.
Radio masts and towers are, typically, tall structures designed to support antennas (also known as aerials in the UK) for telecommunications and broadcasting, including television. They are among the tallest man-made structures.
..... Click the link for more information.
Ayala Avenue is an avenue in Makati City in the Philippines. It is one of the busiest thoroughfares in Metro Manila, crossing through the heart of Makati's central business district.
..... Click the link for more information.
The Philippines is an archipelago of 7,107 islands with a total land area of 300,000 km². The 11 largest islands contain 94% of the total land area. The largest of these islands is Luzon at about 105,000 km². The next largest island is Mindanao at about 94,600 km².
..... Click the link for more information.
'Philippine Insurrection'. This name was historically the most commonly used in the U.S., but Filipinos and some American historians refer to these hostilities as the Philippine-American War, and, in 1999, the U.S.
..... Click the link for more information.


This article is copied from an article on Wikipedia.org - the free encyclopedia created and edited by online user community. The text was not checked or edited by anyone on our staff. Although the vast majority of the wikipedia encyclopedia articles provide accurate and timely information please do not assume the accuracy of any particular article. This article is distributed under the terms of GNU Free Documentation License.