Chester County’s rich history of aviation and aeronautical achievement will be honored with the dedication of a historical marker recognizing the Main Line Airport on Thursday, Oct. 5 at 2 PM.
The Main Line Airport, also known as the Paoli Airport, stood for more than a half-century at the current site of the Great Valley Corporate Center in Malvern. As one of Pennsylvania’s earliest country airfields, it served aviation from the 1920s into the 1970s, and was home to major research breakthroughs that would be later incorporated into the world’s first successful helicopter.
“The Main Line Airport is one of our region’s unsung heroes, but the courage, innovation, and contributions of its pilots, aviators, and engineers were by no means insignificant,” said State Senator Andrew Dinniman. “The airport provided training for countless pilots during both peace and wartime, including a Civil Air Patrol squadron in the uncertain early months of World War II.
Dinniman will be joined by officials from the Tredyffrin-Easttown Historical Society, East Whiteland Township, Chester County, the American Helicopter Museum, and Ricoh Americas in dedicating the marker. The event, located at 70 Valley Stream Parkway in the Great Valley Corporate Center, is free and open to the public. It will include, weather permitting, a classic aircraft flyover of several vintage aircraft from the period that the Main Line Airport was in operation.
The event will close with a small reception and light refreshments at the adjacent headquarters of Ricoh. Many historic photographs will be on display there, and aviators who actually flew out of the Main Line Airport and its subsequent heliport will be in attendance.