The Marine Division

Welcome to the DC-3 Airways Marine Division!

Baltimore Municipal Airport's seaplane facility, 1939. Photographed by Robert Kniesche. Your Marine Division's home base is at Baltimore Municipal Airport, KBMA, six miles east of Baltimore, Maryland.

This airport is very accurate thanks to Mike White's extensive research and Al Gay's scenery design.

The Marine Division has much to offer as you'll see below. And KBMA serves all ... seaplanes as well as land aircraft up to a DC-4.




Baltimore Municipal Airport's seaplane facility, 1939. Photographed by Robert Kniesche.

KBMA Slide Show ... Getting Started ... Aircraft ... Flights ... How to Fly ... KBMA History

ADD-ON 2 . . . 19 new KBMA Flights by Mike White.

ADD-ON 1 . . . An AI Steamboat by Mike White. See Picture here.

UPDATE 3 . . . New Passenger Terminal and DC-4 Hangar. The Basic Marine Division Files and all previous updates must already be installed. See Pictures here.

UPDATE 2 . . . The Basic Marine Division Files and Update 1 must already be installed.

UPDATE 1  . . . If necessary, see below to install the Basic Marine Division Files first.

The KBMA Slide Show

Slide Projector

What can one say but:

"A picture is worth a thousand words."

If your graphics viewer won't play wmv files, (IRFan will) Microsoft's freeware Windows Media Player is quite good.

Display the slides at 640 x 480 resolution and turn on your sound.

Dial-up users should download the 3.1 MB file (right-click the link above and select "Save Target As"), then view it.

Getting Started with the Marine Division ... The Scenery

KBMA airport

The first step is to download and install the Baltimore Municipal Airport scenery file. Mike White has written a clear, easy-to-follow set of instructions and sooner than you think, you will be admiring this fabulous airport and eager to get on with the flying.

Mike has also included several help documents, covering such topics as aircraft settings, creating a new FSNav Database, and the seeming discrepancies between KBMA runway headings and their numbering.

KBMA is a good working land airfield. It's a work in progress with much more planned, so check back often!

Here's how to open and close the hangar doors.
  Baltimore Municipal Airport. Click image for larger size.


Screenshot by Mark Beaumont

As mentioned above, Baltimore Municipal Airport welcomes both land planes and seaplanes. FS2004 pilots are particularly fortunate, though, to have access to a float version of the DC-3, the XC-47. This is a freeware add-on for owners of the fs9 MAAM-SIM R4D/DC3.

Here are links to the aircraft files that you will need.
  Screenshot by Mark Beaumont ... Click image for larger size.


FSNav view of 16NJ Airport

Float Plane pilots view FSNav diagrams and Sectional Charts differently than those piloting only land-based aircraft. Your initial flight-planning task is to locate a Seaplane Base near your destination. See the Hummel Seaplane Base, 16NJ, in the FSNav diagram to the left. This is the destination airport for Marine Division flight FL005.

Note how "fat" Hummel's runway is compared to its length. That's a dead give-away that this is a seaplane base. The drop-down window shows that 16NJ's water runway is 15,001 ft long and 4000 ft wide!

That should provide some latitude for even the sloppiest approach!
  Hummel Seaplane Base, Island Heights, New Jersey, USA

16NJ Seaplane Base, Washington Sectional Chart

Here's the Hummel Seaplane Base as shown on the Washington Sectional Chart. The nearby anchor symbol identifies this as a Seaplane Base.

The numbers below the airport name, 00-150, indicate an elevation of zero ft MSL and the runway length is 15,000 ft (the length shown is in hundreds of feet).

Download the Marine Division Flight Documents here.

If you would like to contribute a flight, or two or three, to the
Marine Division, please submit it to
and place Marine Division Flight in the subject line.
  Hummel Seaplane Base, Washington Sectional Chart.
  Image scanned by Ron Bushell.

How to Fly a Float Plane

Sight-Seeing around Manhattan

Well, you've downloaded and installed the KBMA scenery files, the same with the XC-47 files for the fs9 MAAM-SIM DC-3, and have properly affixed Mark Beaumont's textures to your float plane. But you've never flown a float plane?

That's GREAT! ... Because now you can learn how to do it properly.

Microsoft included a fine tutorial in FS2004 on how to fly a float plane.

Here is Microsoft's Tutorial in PDF Format. Read or print.

Important XC-47 Tips
  Some views can only be seen from a Float Plane.

The History of Baltimore Municipal Airport

Even in the early days of aviation the value and need of commercial aviation facilities was recognized. In 1921 Logan Field opened in Baltimore, the first of its kind in the state of Maryland. About five miles east of downtown Baltimore, it was built on a large, level field which had been a truck farm.

Logan Field in 1935
Logan Field from a 1935 Navy Aeronautical Chart.

The Seaplane Terminal

 Only five years later, the Baltimore City government decided that a more modern facility was needed, one that could accommodate state-of-the-art land and sea planes. This would replace Logan Field.

Mayor William Broening chose a 360-acre site on the shores of the Patapsco River and Colgate Creek, practically across the street from the field it was replacing. According to the book "Maryland Aloft,” by Preston, Lanman, and Breihan, construction of the airport began in 1929. The construction project coincided with a harbor dredging effort, so tons of harbor silt was available for fill material and an artificial point into the Patapsco River was created for the runways. But this gift of silt for the new airport's construction proved to be a fiasco, as the fill failed to harden according to predictions, and it dragged out the construction of the land-plane side of the airport beyond the end of the decade, requiring additional loans and millions of dollars of new federal grants.

In spite of the difficulties with the land-plane portion of the airport, a seaplane ramp was dedicated in 1932. Later, a seaplane terminal was constructed, providing hangar space, offices, a passenger concourse, lounge, and observation deck. Pan American Airways began operating from the Baltimore seaplane terminal in 1938. (See photo at top of this page).

1935 Washington Sectional showing Baltimore's Seaplane Terminal 

 Portion of a 1935 Washington Sectional Chart
showing the Seaplane Base (Anchor Symbol).

The former seaplane terminal at Harbor Field 

The former seaplane terminal at Harbor Field.  

By 1948, the popularity of the seaplane had waned, as decent runway facilities were built for the major cities. The beautiful and temperamental flying boats fell into disuse. So did Baltimore's seaplane terminal.

The Land Plane Terminal

The land-plane terminal at Baltimore Municipal Airport was built in 1940 in the Art-Deco style. It was constructed of brown brick, with two-story wings flanking an octagonal section.

The land-plane terminal at Baltimore Municipal Airport
A control tower topped the octagonal section of the terminal.

The W.P.A. (A Federal Job Creation program during the Great Depression) funded the construction of a Maryland National Guard hangar which consisted of a steel-frame hangar with adjoining offices and shops. However, with the onset of WW2, higher military priorities prevented the Maryland National Guard from moving into their purpose-built facilities at Harbor Field until 1946.

After a prolonged construction period, Baltimore's Municipal Airport was finally dedicated on November 16, 1941. But by this point, only three airlines served the airport, and all normal civilian traffic was suspended in 1942 when the War Department took over the field.

Portion of 1939 Washington Sectional showing “Baltimore”
This 1939 Sectional Chart now
identifies the airport as "Baltimore."

1950 Airport Diagram, Baltimore Municipal Airport
1950 Airport Diagram, Baltimore Municipal Airport.

Civilian airline service returned to Baltimore Municipal Airport after WW2, with 136,000 airline passengers using the facility in 1946.

In 1950, the much larger Friendship Airport (eventually renamed Baltimore Washington International Airport) was dedicated south of Baltimore, with purpose-built runways that were sized to accommodate the coming jet airliners.

This doomed the older airport, which was renamed Harbor Field, as all airline operations relocated to Friendship Airport. During the 1950s Harbor Field remained an Air Guard base and continued to serve private pilots and business aviation.

In 1958, the city received $4.1 million for the airport, which was transferred to the Maryland Port Authority for conversion into a marine terminal ,still operating today as the Dundalk Marine Terminal.

On December 31, 1960, the Baltimore Municipal Airport was closed.


All of the above information including photographs, chart segments, and diagrams was adapted from
Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields: Maryland, by Paul Freeman (revised 4/25/04).