This study considers the complex interplay of factors that shaped and formed the selection, retention, abandonment, and development of the system of flying fields and air bases for the U.S. Army Air Corps and its predecessor organizations over the three decades preceding WWII--a period that has been only cursorily examined from the point of view of ground facilities. No previous works have focused on the question of why air bases are located where they are. Author Jerold E. Brown has consulted an abundance of source materials to create the comprehensive eight-chapter volume: printed hearings, documents, and reports generated by Congress; maps, blueprints, staff studies, the correspondence of the Office of the Chief Signal Officer, and several hundred volumes of the Constructing Quartermaster Completion Reports in the National Archives; and unit histories and typescript field histories. Hundreds of articles on the construction and operation of airfields, many written by serving officers, as well as technical manuals, and correspondence of the Office of the Chief of Air Service and Chief of the Air Corps were only part of the data surveyed in preparing the fact-filled text. Eight period photos of airfields from Alaska to Texas, six maps, seven figures, and eight tables complement such chapters as "Plans, Parade Grounds, and Politics" and "Air Bases, Plans, and Preparations." This history of the development of early airfields should help to correct previously held views and assumptions on the subject based on a lack of in-depth research in this area and will be a real treasure trove of information for scholars of Military History.