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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Getting High in the ’40s

<tober 16th, 1942 issue of the Carletonian, John Mattill wrote, “On the green grass of the Minnesota prairie, in a place that looks as far out in the sticks as the middle of Wyoming and just as flat, is Carleton’s newest 160 acres.”

The school’s “newest 160 acres” was Dack Farm in Stanton, a small junction eight miles directly east of campus on route 19. Why did Carleton buy this tiny farm “far out in the sticks”? Mattill continued: “Fifteen-foot solid concrete block walls, buttressed with little niches all ready for the roof beams, marks the hangar. Window empty, the place for the moment looks more like ruins of an ancient cathedral than a modern airport-to-be.”

1942 marked the middle of World War II. According to Admission’s historical timeline, the War brought “major disruptions to campus life,” with 1,500 Carleton students serving in the forces. In 1943, male enrollment fell to 98 students from 455. Carleton bought Stanton farm to build an airport, in order to train male students as pilots. Geologist Dr. Gould prospected the area and deemed it appropriate due to its “unobstructed approaches, flat terrain, and good drainage.” After the completion of the building, Carleton began to offer basic air training to male students.

In 1944, however, as the war came to close, Carleton sold the property to a private enterprise, Triangle Aviation, and the Stanton Airfield has been commercially used since this time.

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