Louisville Forge and Gear Works Records, 1941-1945, 1982-2003

Held by The Filson Historical Society

Creator: Louisville Forge and Gear Works

Title: Records, 1941-1945, 1982-2003

Rights: For information regarding literary and copyright interest for these papers, contact the Curator of Special Collections.

Size of Collection: 2 cubic feet

Location Number: Mss./BB/L888h

Scope and Content Note

The Louisville Forge and Gear Works (LFGW) records consist largely of land papers concerning the Works and the purchase of the Works to allow for the expansion of Standiford Field Airport, which eventually became known as Louisville International Airport. These materials were compiled as part of a lawsuit concerning financial compensation for the land used in expanding Standiford Field Airport, and many are marked as defense exhibits.

Land papers consist largely of blueprints of buildings, surveys of land, and aerial photos of the LFGW factory, Standiford Field, and surrounding area. The documents provide details of some buildings, as well as interior and exterior shots of LFGW buildings and land. There are also technical and planning documents related to the expansion of Standiford Field, and blueprints and surveys of the area from when the factory was operated by Curtiss-Wright Corporation and International Harvester Corporation.

There is also a small amount of articles and publications related to the Standiford Field Airport, as well as an index to news articles and publications concerning LFGW for the years 1943-1993.

Finally, ten VHS tapes concerning the airport expansion, LFGW contracts, and interviews with various individuals are present. These tapes were not viewed at the time of processing [July 2013], and descriptions are based on labels.

Four over-sized photos in the collection were separated to the Filson’s Photograph Collection. Photocopies of these photos can be found in the finding aid folder.

Historical Note

The facility which eventually became the Louisville Forge and Gear Works underwent many changes of ownership during its life time. Originally built in 1942 by the federal government and managed by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation, which constructed C-76 and C-46 airplanes, Curtiss-Wright vacated the building 1 August 1945. The factory was then briefly operated by the Laisster-Kauffmann company of St. Louis, MO. In early 1946 government contracts with Laisster-Kauffmann were cancelled, and the plant reopened as International Harvester. In 1985 the facility became the Louisville Forge and Gear Works as part of the corporate restructuring of International Harvester Corporation. The plant was demolished in 1997 as part of the expansion of Standiford Field, and operations moved to Georgetown, Kentucky.

Folder List

Folders 1-4: Land Papers, Curtiss Wright Corporation Blueprints, 1941-1945

Folder 5: Aerial Photos and Information Regarding Standiford Field, 1980s-1990s

Folders 6-7: Standiford Field Surveys and Maps, 1982-1983

Folders 8-9: Evaluation of Airport Facility Needs at Standiford Field Technical Reports, 1988

Folders 10-14: Standiford Field Planning Documents, circa 1988

Folder 15: Louisville Forge and Gear Works Surveys and Maps, 1989

Folder 16: Regional Airport Authority Map of Standiford Field, 1991

Folder 17: Interior and Exterior Photos of Louisville Forge and Gear Works, circa 1993

Folder 18: Exterior Photos of Louisville Forge and Gear Works, circa 1993

Folder 19: Aerial View of Standiford Field, 28 July 2003

Folder 20: International Harvester Plant Surveys and Maps, undated

Folder 21: Index of News Articles and Publications 1943-1993 concerning LFGW, circa 1993

Folder 22: Miscellaneous Articles and Publications Concerning Standiford Field, 1980s-1990s

VHS Tapes

Tape 23: Airport Neighborhood Relocation Meeting, 19 September 1988

Tape 24: Regional Airport Authority Production Shoot, 10 October 1988

Tape 25: Night Line Interview Peyton, 6 January 1992

Tape 26: Louisville Forge and Gear Navistar Contract, 7 January 1992

Tape 27: Louisville Forge Supplies Crankshafts to Toyota, 7 January 1992

Tape 28: Approval of Airport Project, 13 February 1992

Tape 29: By the Lake Discussions 1 (edited), undated

Tape 30: By the Lake Discussions 2 (edited), undated

Tape 31: General Overview Footage, RAA Proposed Runway Expansion, Raw Footage, undated

Tape 32: Jack Guthrie and Associates, Airport Master, undated

Subject Headings

Airports – Kentucky – Louisville

Airports – Photographs

Curtiss-Wright Corporation

Factories – Kentucky – Louisville

Factories – Photographs

International Harvester Company

Louisville Forge and Gear Works (Louisville, Ky.) Sources

Louisville Standiford Field

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The Filson will reopen to the public on September 1st, 2021 – Read More! All events are currently being held virtually; to register for our live virtual events, please visit our Events Page; for information on recorded lectures and other activities, please visit us online at Bringing History Home.

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