Since the founding of the Dryden Flight Research Center History Office in 1996, its staff has conducted nearly a hundred interviews with retired and serving employees. Their recollections represent a unique resource in understanding the development of aerospace technology in the second half of the 20th century. Their personal experiences, insights, and opinions allow the reader to gain an understanding into what it was actually like to have been involved with some of the milestone events in aerospace history. These interviews have been edited and assembled into this monograph, so that a wider audience can also share in their experiences. This study covers the early years of what eventually became the Dryden Flight Research Center. It spans the period between the arrival of Walter Williams and the first group of NACA engineers at Muroc in 1946, and ends with the establishment of NASA in 1958. This timeframe encompasses the breaking of the sound barrier, the pivotal inertial coupling research, the first use of computer simulations, the transformation of the NACA facility from a pair of old hangars into a state-of-the-art research center, and the dawn of the space age. These events took place against the background of the end of World War II, the start of the Cold War, and the twin technological revolutions of jet propulsion and supersonic flight. They are told by the people who participated in these events, in their own words.