Title: Soaring into history
Author: Jennifer Vazquez
Publisher: Leader News
Few Americans, including New Jerseyans and even local residents, are aware that they have a truly eminent piece of aviation history located in the heart of Bergen County. The reality of the matter is that Teterboro Airport holds a valuable spot in the annals of South Bergen's history. Henry M. Holden wants readers to know just that, through his new book of historical photos and information titled "Teterboro Airport."
With the help of numerous captions and photographs, the majority of which were previously unpublished, compiled from both Holden's personal collection and the New Jersey Aviation Hall of Fame, the story of Bergen County's Teterboro Airport comes to life.
While doing research for a previous book, Holden came upon an immeasurable amount of information and pictures of Teterboro Airport and its history. It was then that the idea for this book came to life, according to Holden.
"I was writing a book on Newark Airport prior to this one," explained Holden in a recent inerview. "While doing research at Teterboro Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum I realized that the history of aviation in New Jersey came out of Teterboro."
Stumbling upon all this vast information while doing research for his prior book allowed Holden to finish "Teterboro Airport" in a couple of months.
When reader's flip through the pages of "Teterboro Airport," they will view some interesting and incredible historical photographs. There are various pictures that depict a time in Teterboro Airport's history when barnstorming was the norm and a very popular form of entertainment. Such entertainment centered around a group of pilots performing outlandish, and, frankly, dangerous stunts, according to Holden.
"During the 1920s and 1930s, barnstorming and air shows were very popular," said Holden. "Pilots would go up on planes and jump from one plane to another, and do this without a parachute. People would flock by the thousands to see them perform stunts."
Of all the interesting things in this airport's history, which are almost all contained in his book, Holden considers the most fascinating aspect to be the rarely known fact that iconic aviators and aviatrices have set foot (and, in this case, their planes) on the airport's runways.
"There are many fascinating things," said Holden. "The most impressive thing is that the greats like Charles Lindbergh, Amelia Earhart and others set world records and had Teterboro as either their starting or ending point."
As a matter of fact, hundreds of aviation records came out of Teterboro Airport, according to Holden.
So important was the contribution of Teterboro Airport in aviation history that it is at times referred to as "the cradle of the golden age of aviation."
Teterboro is the oldest operating airport in the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area, with continuous use since 1916, according to Holden. At one point, it was the busiest airport in the nation. In 1949, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey purchased it, and today it serves as an airport that, mostly, handles private and business flights.
Holden is an aviation historian, author, writer and photographer, who has written more than 900 magazine and newspaper articles -- losing track of the exact number, he jokes. He has been a commentator for the History Channel and remembers being fascinated by aviation from a young age.
"I remember being about 9 years old," he reminisced. "And going to La Guardia Airport's observation deck."
He is currently working on a book about the history of Morristown Municipal Airport.
"Teterboro Airport" is available at online and local book retailers and through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com.
Title: Teterboro book takes flight
Author: John A. Gavin
Publisher: Herald News
Henry M. Holden, an aviation historian and freelance writer, has written a book about Teterboro Airport. With 128 pages and 220 black-and-white photos, "Images of Aviation -- Teterboro Airport" is in the Arcadia Publishing series of paperbacks that chronicle the history of various communities.
Writer and historian Henry M. Holden says the Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum in Teterboro supplied all the information he needed for his book, which features 220 photos. Published two weeks ago, the book's first signing was Saturday at the New Jersey Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum in Teterboro. Future events include a book signing at Barnes & Noble, Route 17 south, Paramus, on March 27 at 1 p.m.
Holden, who lives in Randolph, has written 36 books, including another Arcadia collection about Newark Airport. He is working on a book about Morristown Airport.
Did the Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum reach out to you to write the book?
No, I reached out to them. I've been a member of the museum for the last 28 years. A friend of mine on Long Island wrote a book on La Guardia Airport and that prompted to me write a book about Newark [Airport]. While I was researching the Newark book, I found some interesting facts about Teterboro, so I decided to write about Teterboro.
Where did you find the information?
All the information I needed came right from this museum. Most of the records and photographs came right from here. This is the repository for all of New Jersey's aviation history. And I'll say … 95 percent of the history is right here in the form of photographs, audiotapes and 16- and 32-millimeter films.
What are some of the differences and similarities of the two airports?
Newark and Teterboro are on the same flood plain. They both are on Meadowlands, and they flood up every time it rains. What Newark did, they built their runway 6 feet higher than the flood plain. Teterboro did not do that. Newark developed into an international airport. And it was only after World War II that Teterboro began to blossom into a freight depot for the country. Now today, it's a major airport for business aviation. The contrast between the two is significant when you consider that they both started at the same time -- relatively, in the early 1920s -- and they took two very divergent paths to their current existence.
I was impressed with the chronological order of events. How difficult was it to put that together?
It took a while because the records, for the most part, were in several vertical files. There was no rhyme or reason to why they were placed where they were. I'd find something from 1926 right behind something from 1992. So it was a matter of laying it out in decade form first, then narrowing it down within each decade in chronological order.
What tidbits of information do you think will surprise the average reader?
Teterboro is significant because there were hundreds of aviation records set here, and many of the those people were prominent. Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindbergh, Frank Hawks, Floyd Bennett, Admiral [Richard E.] Byrd all flew out of here.