World War II Historical marker unveiled in Dalhart
The Texas Historical Commission in conjunction with the Dallam County Historical Commission, the City of Dalhart and Hartley County will dedicate an official Texas Historical marker commemorating the historical significance of Dalhart Army Air Field during World War II.
The marker dedication ceremony is scheduled for Friday, August 7th at 10:00 a.m. at Veterans Memorial Park in Dalhart (7th Street Park). The Hoblitzelle Foundation of Dallas founded the marker, which is the 18th in an overall series of special historical markers throughout the state entitled “Vignettes of Wartime in Texas.” Part of the Texas Historical Commission’s Texas in World War II initiative, these markers tell the real stories of the state’s involvement in the war effort.
Guest speakers at the unveiling include Texas State Representative John T. Smithee, Dallam County Judge David Field, Dalhart Mayor Kevin Caddell, Hartley County Judge Ronnie Gordon, Dallam County Historical Commission and the Texas Historical Commission. Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend.
The Texas Historical Commission in Texas in World War II initiative is a program to honor and preserve the memories of Texans who served in the armed forces during World War II and the significant contribution Texans made to the war effort. Historical markers, a special commemorative brochure, oral history training workshops and a statewide military/home front sites survey are part of this special program that is enriching lives through history.
In March 1943, Dalhart Army Air Field (DAAF) began training B-17 bomber crews as replacements for losses suffered in the European Theater of Operations. Cadets flew training missions over practice target areas in the Panhandle, while fighter aircraft cadets practiced bomber escort duty at two satellite fields. By early 1944, America’s strategic bombing needs lay in the Pacific and several bombardment groups (B-29’s) trained at DAAF. As a result, in little more than three years, DAAF and Dallam and Hartley counties were significantly impacted by the evolving demand of the U.S. war effort. DAAF closed in December, 1945.