Marker #1731 Godman Field

Historical Marker #1731, in Hardin County, Kentucky, commemorates the Godman Army Airfield, an army airfield that is a part of Fort Knox.

Godman Field was established in October 1918 during World War I. The airspace was built for the 29th Aero Squadron at Camp Knox. Initially, the airfield was only utilized by the armed forces of Fort Knox. However, when the United States entered World War II, Godman Field became the first Air Force group training station for medium bomber groups. The 387th and 391st Bombardment Groups formed and trained at Godman Field in 1943 to prepare for their overseas deployments.

In 1944, when the mission changed to replacement training, the 477th Bombardment Group became the B-25 Replacement Training unit. Godman Field hosted the training for all replacement personnel prior to their reassignment to combat units overseas. Because of the role Godman Field had in the Allies’ WWII victory, the airspace became a permanent station of the United States Army Air Force. A year later, in 1946, Godman was reassigned to the Tenth Air Force as part of the Air Force Reserve. The 315th Army Air Force Base Unit became the host organization, and the 477th Bomb Group remained as the flying organization until its deactivation in October 1946. Godman Field was redesignated as the 315th Air Force Base Unit in September, and in July 1948, it became the 2236th Air Force Reserve Training Center. During that time, Godman Field was renamed Godman Air Force Base.

On October 10, 1950, during the Korean War, President Harry S. Truman placed the Kentucky Air National Guard’s 123rd Fighter-Bomber Group on active duty and moved the unit from Standiford Field, in Louisville, to the Godman Airforce Base. The airfield was then reassigned to tactical air command. The unit’s P-51 Mustangs were ferried to the war zone, and several of the unit’s pilots volunteered for combat duty over Korea. After the 1953 armistice in Korea, Godman Field was phased down and the 4430th Air Base Wing became the host organization at the field. Air Force activities were ended, and the base was inactivated on December 31, 1953. It was then transferred to the U.S. Army and deemed the light aircraft and helicopter airfield of Fort Knox. Godman Field was renamed Godman Army Airfield and remains known as the Godman AAF.

Marker #1731 was dedicated by the Kentucky Historical Society. It reads: Godman Field. First airfield in Kentucky, used since October 1918 when built for 29th Aero Sqdn. Operated by 31st Balloon Co. 1920-21. Largely inactive until 1937, when 12th Observation Sqdn. assigned here through early 1942. World War II units included the 73rd Reconnaissance Group and the 387th, 391st, 477th Bombardment Groups with Martin B-26 aircraft. See other side. Presented by Kentucky Aviation Assn. and Kentucky Historical Society. (Reverse) Godman Field. Named for Lt. Louis K. Godman who was killed in airplane crash at Columbia, S.C., 28 September 1918. Original 4 hangars were located 1/2 mile N.E. of this site. Two moved ca. 1922 to Louisville's Bowman Field; one is now Bldg. 1338 on Angel Alley, and one is Bldg. 1328 on Briggs St. Present main hangar and runways constructed in 1941. Presented by Kentucky Aviation Assn. and Ky. Historical Society.