Masset, British Columbia

Dakota about to land on the steel grid airstrip. Gruman Goose readying for departure.

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During 1943 the RCAF unit 9CMU arrived. They built a steel mat landing strip and constructed a prefab camp out on the beach off Minaker Rd. By 1944 this unit was manned by approximately 60 airmen. Their living conditions were much superior to that of the Navy. Local RCAF planes, based out of Aliford Bay, were frequent visitors, as well as CANSO's and PBY's which arrived daily. Mail, movies and supplies were available to the Navy daily after the arrival of the RCAF, a decidedly marked improvement for them. The air force also provided emergency transportation for civilians as well as the RCN.

All of the photos on this page were taken or provided and captioned by Cpl Garfield Graham, an RCAF radio operator posted to Masset during 1944. The photos have been provided to me by Dorothy Graham of Tsawwassen BC after the passing of Garfield. The photos are in 4 groups, the Airfield, New Masset, Old Massett and Miscellaneous and offer a fairly good view of what the area looked like in the mid 1940's.

Masset Airstrip photos.

"Laying the steel matting for the landing strip at Massett."

"Metal squares set in the sand for planes to land on. Emergency landing strip, only one of this type in Canada so far as we know. "

"Goose on landing strip ready to take off. Dakota approaching runway."

"Dakota and Douglas Dive Bombers (American aircraft that made emergency landing at Massett."

"Ventura aircraft parked in parking area."

"Douglas Bombers that made emergency landing at Massett. I was on duty alone and had to yell for help from my fellow Wireless Operators to bring them in."

"Douglas Dive Bombers, American aircraft that made emergency landing at Massett."

"Aircraft Control Tower, Massett."

"The Power Supply shack on the beach."

"Ed and I at the controls - VK - Massett."

9 Construction Maintenance Unit - Massett.

"Mess Dinner with the Navy invited from their W/T station."

Old Massett village photos.

"A shot of Old Massett village."

"A tree truck in which a Native Indian was buried as was their custom in the early days. "

"The Famous Burial Tree."

"A Native Indian gravestone in the village at Old Massett."

Miscellaneous photos.

"On the Masset fishing dock."

"9CMU trucks used in construction of the Airstrip."

"Gruman Goose in the Airstrip parking area."

"Garfield in front of the Power Hut - one day of snow - only time it snowed in the years I was there."

"Air Force Boat - "Nipkish"."

"Lanagara Island Lighthouse circa 1944."

"Garfield Graham, circa 1943-44."

Garfield Graham Graduation #1 Wireless School Montreal 1943.

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