On this site, which was the Dutch Flats Airport, Charles A. Lindbergh made the first flight of his Spirit of St. Louis airplane, constructed in 60 days by dedicated employees of Ryan Airlines, Inc. The 20-minute flight on 28 April 1927 was witnessed by those who built the aircraft. Lindbergh describes the flight:
In its infancy, Hangar Nine housed Curtiss JN-4s ("Jennys") like the one Charles Lindbergh landed there when he reported for duty as a flying cadet in 1924.
As the U.S. was preparing to enter World War I, the Army raced to build an entire airfield, complete with 16 wooden hangars, successfully completing it in less than a year. The last remaining World War I facility of its kind, Hangar Nine at Brooks Air Force Base represents the emergence of fast-track construction methods using available materials and the skills of a local workforce.