26th Air Division: Wikis

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26th Air Division
USAF 26th Air Division Crest.jpg
Emblem of the 26th Air Division
Active 1948–1990
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Role Command and Control
Part of Tactical Air Command (ADTAC)

The 26th Air Division (26th AD) is an inactive United States Air Force organization. Its last assignment was with Tactical Air Command, (ADTAC) assigned to First Air Force, being stationed at March Air Force Base, California. It was inactivated on 30 September 1990.

Contents

History

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Lineage

  • Established as 26 Air Defense Division on 21 October 1948
Activated on 16 November 1948
Redesignated 26 Air Division (Defense) on 20 June 1949
Inactivated on 1 February 1952
  • Organized on 1 February 1952
Redesignated: 26 Air Division (SAGE) on 8 August 1958
Redesignated: 26 Air Division on 1 April 1966
Inactivated on 30 September 1969
  • Activated on 19 November 1969
Inactivated on 30 September 1990

Assignments

Attached to Eastern Air Defense Force, 17 Nov 1949
Remained attached to Eastern Air Defense Force to 31 Aug 1950

Stations

Redesignated Hancock Field, New York, 14 February 1959

Components

Sectors

Topsham AFS, Maine
Custer AFS, Michigan
Goose AFB, Labrador, Canada
Gunter AFS, Alabama
March AFB, California
Syracuse AFS, New York
Fort Lee AFS, Virginia

Wings

Hamilton AFB, California
  • 78th Fighter Wing: 1 April 1966 – 15 September 1969; 19 November – 31 December 1969
Hamilton AFB, California
Otis AFB, Massachusetts
Redesignated: 4621st Air Defense Wing (SAGE), 1 Apr 1956
Redesignated: New York Air Defense Sector, 1 Oct 1956-1 Oct 1966
McGuire AFB, New Jersey
Redesignated: Boston Air Defense Sector, 1 Oct 1956-1 Apr 1966
Otis AFB, Massachusetts
Stewart AFB, New York
Niagara Falls MAP, New York
Redesignated as: 33d Fighter Wing: 18 October 1956 – 8 January 1957
(under control of 4622d Air Defense Wing [SAGE], 18 October 1956 – 8 January 1957)
Otis AFB, Massachusetts
New Castle Airport, Delaware

Air Force

Division

  • 26th Air Division (SAGE) Provisional: attached 15 May 1963 – 1 July 1964.

Groups

Kingsley Field, Oregon
Oxnard AFB, California
  • 503 Aircraft Control and Warning Group
Attached 1 April – 15 November 1949
Assigned 16 November 1949 – 1 February 1952 (not operational, 25 March 1950 – 1 February 1952) (Inactivated February 1952)
Roslyn AFS. New York
  • 751 Air Defense Group: 1 March 1970 – 17 January 1974
Redesignated 751st Radar Squadron, 17 January 1974
Laguna AFS, California
  • 858 Air Defense Group: 1 March 1970 – 17 January 1974
Resesignated 858th Radar Squadron, 17 January 1974
Las Vegas AFS, Nevada
  • 4604th Support Group (Texas Towers)
762d Air Control and Warning (AC&W) Squadron (SAGE) (TT-2) (April 1958 – 15 January 1963)
Parent station was North Truro AFS, Massachusetts
773d Air Control Group and Warning (AC&W) Squadron (SAGE) (TT-3) (October 1958 – 25 March 1963)
Parent station was Montauk AFS, LI, New York
646th Air Control Group and Warning (AC&W) Squadron (SAGE) (TT-4) (April 1959 – 15 January 1961)
Parent station was Highlands AFS, New Jersey

Squadrons

  • 6th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-A)
Suffolk County AFB, New York, 1959-1964
  • 22d Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-A/B)
Langley AFB, Virginia (1960-1972)
  • 26th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-A/B)
Otis AFB, Massachusetts, 1960-1972
  • 30th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-A)
Dow AFB, Maine, 1960-1964
  • 35th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-B)
Niagara Falls International Airport, New York, 1961-1969
  • 37th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-B)
Kincheloe AFB, Michigan, 1961-1972
  • 46th Air Defense Missile Squadron (BOMARC-A/B)
McGuire AFB, New Jersey, 1959-1972
Travis AFB, California
Castle AFB, California
Castle AFB, California
  • 4758 Defense Systems Evaluation: 19 November 1969 – 31 October 1970
Holloman AFB, New Mexico

Operational History

Beginning in November 1948, the division performed air defense over an area that covered much of the industrial northeast, including New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.. It employed off shore naval picket ships, fixed "Texas Tower" radar sites, airborne early warning units, and a civilian ground observer corps program. The latter phased down when the SAGE program was implemented.

Improved radar and communications equipment and fighter interceptors, and better techniques and methods, eventually led to the 26th Air Division becoming the first operational SAGE air defense system (1 January 1959) within Air Defense Command.

The 26th's area of control expanded until by 1963 its boundaries extended from the Arctic to the Gulf of Mexico and well toward the center of the United States. In 1961 the division assumed air defense training responsibility for Air National Guard (ANG) units within the area.

During the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, the division deployed fighter aircraft and part of its airborne early warning and control force to Florida. In April 1966, the division, replaced by the First Air Force, moved without personnel or equipment to Adair Air Force Station, Oregon, where it assumed responsibility for the defense of Oregon, part of California and Nevada, gradually phasing down until it replaced the 27th Air Division at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona in November 1969.

In October 1979, it transferred to Tactical Air Command and continued to supervise its assigned components until 1 July 1987. Inactivated and redesignated as Southwest Air Defense Sector on 1 October 1990

References

PD-icon.svg This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  • Aerospace Defense Command publication, The Interceptor, January 1979 (Volume 21, Number 1).

External links


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