Douglas A/B-26 Invader

McClellan AFB

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McClellan Air Force Base
(McClellan Field, Pacific Air Depot, Sacramento Air Depot, Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento)

McClellan Field was 10 miles ortheast of Sacramento. In 1935, at the time is was established, it was known as Pacific Air Depot and was one of only four such air depots in the country. In 1938 the base was renamed Sacramento Air Depot and underwent a major expansion as a repair and overhaul facility for P-38 and P-39 fighter planes. The planes were serviced on an assembly line basis. In 1940 an assembly line was added to overhaul P-40 fighters.

In December 1941, soon after the attack on Pearl Harbor, P40s, B-26s and B-17s began arriving at the field to be armed and prepared for immediate shipment overseas. Some B-17s came direct to McClellan from the factories. During this time most of the Army Air Forces planes that went to the Pacific Theater were prepared at McClellan.

In March 1942 Lieutenant Colonel Jimmy Doolittle's B-25s arrived at McClellan for arming in preparation for their famous Tokyo raid. From here the planes went to NAS, Alameda to be loaded aboard the aircraft carrier "Hornet".

During the war numerous planes arrived here from all over the U.S. to be armed and otherwise prepared for shipment overseas to combat areas. After the war McClellan became a storage center of several types of aircraft including B-29 bombers. The base was renamed McClellan Air Force Base in 1948 and it's repair and overhaul mission continued throughout the Cold War.

McClellan was closed in the 1990s after the end of the Cold War.

Construction of the War Department's Sacramento Air Depot began on 29 June 1936, when the Army Quartermaster Corps appointed a constructing quartermaster for the installation. On 1 December 1939 the War Department changed the new installation's name to McClellan Field. The US Air Force became an independent service in 1947, and on 3 February 1948 McClellan Field became McClellan AFB. Eventually the base became the headquarters for Sacramento Air Materiel Area and then evolved into the home of the Sacramento Air Logistics Center. What started with an investment of $7M grew in value to over two billion dollars in facilities and equipment.

Since McClellan AFB opened, the task of keeping US military aircraft flying had become remarkably complex based upon high technology aircraft and systems. McClellan remained one of five centers of AFMC, managing those weapons and systems assigned through the depot modernization effort of the late 1960s and early 1970s. With development of technology repair centers in the command, McClellan assumed worldwide responsibility for the maintenance and management of USAF electrical components, communications­electronics systems, fluid drive accessories, and tactical shelters.

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Refurbishment of Invaders for Air forces in Chile and the Congo was also undertaken at McClellan.