Mr. Hinckley's "Air Force"
In 1938, oversight of civil aviation passed to a new independent agency, the Civil Aeronautics Authority. The second chairman of the Authority was Robert H. Hinckley, shown above with Vannevar Bush and Orville Wright.
Hinckley was the force behind the Civilian Pilot Training Program (CPTP).
Beginning on a regular basis in the 1939-40 school year, the CPTP graduated thousands of new pilots as a means of strengthening the nation for possible war.
After the Pearl Harbor attack, the program was renamed the War Training Service (WTS).
(CAA photos from Patricia Strickland's The "Putt-Putt" Air Force, a 1974 FAA publication.)