Remembering the Old oil Boom Days

Even before World War I, the expansive flat area where the airport is currently located was drawing attention from local “brave souls” who had the nerve to fly early aircraft. After World War I ended in 1918, the appetite for a local airstrip grew as pilots who served overseas in the war returned home to the “highline” area. When oil was discovered in the Kevin Field north of Cut Bank, the nearby communities of Cut Bank, Shelby, Kevin and Sunburst began to thrive.
With the local oil industry booming, Dr. C.H. Minette, a Cut Bank dentist, along with a dedicated group of followers realized a future need for private and commercial aviation facilities.
Support for the airport came not only from the Cut Bank area but from the surrounding counties as well. Property was purchased or leased from Blackfeet tribal members during this time. (Eventually land for the entire airport district would be purchased from tribal members and this would later become the Cut Bank Army Air Force Base early in 1942.)
A lengthy campaign to win services for the region began and in 1930, officials selected the current site and the land was leased as a private grass airfield. On June 1, 1941 Western Airlines made its inaugural flight to the Cut Bank Airport.
According to local newspaper coverage, thousands of people attended the ceremonies with representatives from surrounding

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