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Cahokia in St. Clair County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Parks Air College

 
 
Parks Air College Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jason Voigt, October 1, 2019
1. Parks Air College Marker
Inscription.  Parks Air College was founded in 1927 by visionary aviation pioneer Oliver Lafayette Parks (born Jun 10, 1899 & died Feb 1985) at Lambert Field in St. Louis, Missouri, in a rented hangar. A short time later "Lafe" Parks, as he was affectionately called by his friends moved the college to Cahokia to add additional history to the historical community. The United States Department of Commerce awarded approved school certificate No. 1 to Parks Air College. It became known as the Harvard of Aviation.

During World War II Oliver Parks prepared and presented to the Army a plan to train military pilots using his civilian flight instructors. The Army accepted and thousands were trained by Parks. It was a major contribution to the war effort. Parks Air College is now part of Saint Louis University.
 
Location. 38° 34.262′ N, 90° 11.309′ W. Marker is in Cahokia, Illinois, in St. Clair County. Marker is at the intersection of East 1st Street and Church Street, on the left when traveling east on East 1st Street. Marker is located along with several others around a
Parks Air College Marker image. Click for full size.
By Jason Voigt, October 1, 2019
2. Parks Air College Marker
Marker (in front) is shown facing the clock
clock structure at the Cahokia Wedge (a grassy area), across from Church of the Holy Family. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 124 Church Street, East Saint Louis IL 62206, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. St. Louis Downtown Airport (Parks Airport) (a few steps from this marker); Cahokia Association for the Tricentennial (a few steps from this marker); 13 Star Day (within shouting distance of this marker); Lewis and Clark in Illinois (within shouting distance of this marker); Chief Pontiac (within shouting distance of this marker); Cahokia - The Birthplace of the Midwest (within shouting distance of this marker); The Grand Plan (within shouting distance of this marker); Cahokia (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cahokia.
 
Regarding Parks Air College. Parks Air College was the first federally certified school of aviation in the United States. In 1946, Oliver Parks sold the college to Saint Louis University (SLU). The campus in Cahokia closed its doors in 1996, and the school moved to its new location in mid-town St. Louis. However, training courses are still taught at the nearby St. Louis Downtown Airport. The buildings in Cahokia still sit as of November 2019 (see link for NextSTL). Today, it is known as Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology. Courses are taught in the McDonnell-Douglas
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Hall building.
 
Also see . . .
1. Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology on Wikipedia. More history and information about Parks Air College. (Submitted on November 16, 2019, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.) 

2. Parks Air College: Past, Present and Future. An article on the NextSTL website, written by Thomas Crone (published on January 3, 2019). Contains recent photos of the abandoned buildings of the former campus. Also, talks a lot about the history of the school. (Submitted on November 16, 2019, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.) 
 
Categories. Air & SpaceEducationWar, World II
 

More. Search the internet for Parks Air College.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 16, 2019. This page originally submitted on November 15, 2019, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois. This page has been viewed 60 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 16, 2019, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.
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