WESTERVELT, George Conrad, CAPT

Deceased
 
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Last Rank
Captain
Last Primary Designator/NEC
135X-Unrestricted Line Officer - Naval Aviation Support
Last Rating/NEC Group
Line Officer
Primary Unit
1921-1927, 135X, Naval Aircraft Factory, Philadelphia
Service Years
1903 - 1927
Captain Captain

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

311 kb

Home State
Texas
Texas
Year of Birth
1879
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Steven D. Loomis (SaigonShipYard), IC3 to remember WESTERVELT, George Conrad, CAPT USN(Ret).

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Contact Info
Home Town
Corpus Christi, Texas
Last Address
Not Specified

Date of Passing
Mar 15, 1956
 
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Plot: Section 1 Site 208-B

 Official Badges 

US Navy Retired 20


 Unofficial Badges 

US Navy Honorable Discharge




 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

GEORGE CONRAD WESTERVELT (1879-1956)
Naval A
eronautical Engineer
Co-Founder of Boeing Aircraft Corp.
Designer (Navy-Curtiss, NC) Flying Boats


Westervelt was a Cadet at the USNA class of 1903, graduating 17th out of a class of 68. He was the co-founder of the Boeing Corporation and became the Curtiss-Wright Aviation Corporation's vice president and corporate troubleshooter.

George Conrad Westervelt was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, 30 December 1879, to G.W. Westervelt and Ida Florence Westervelt. He attended Corpus Christi Grammar School and Corpus Christi High School.

George graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy, where he earned the nickname "Scrappy" for his ability to argue any subject. In 1910, after studying naval engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Westervelt served as an official Navy observer at one of America’s first air meets, in New York. Unlike many of his Navy colleagues, he was impressed with the new technology.  In about 1911, the Navy sent Westervelt to Seattle to inspect submarines being built at the Moran Brothers shipyard on the Duwamish River. He joined the prestigious Rainier Club and the University Club, where he met William Boeing. The two bachelors became friends, finding a shared enthusiasm for flying.

Until 1916 Westervelt was stationed on the west coast of the United States. In 1916 he was transferred to the east coast.

Early in September, 1917, Rear-Admiral D. W. Taylor called Naval Constructor Hunsaker and Commander G.C. Westervelt into his office, and gave them instructions to begin the design of a seaplane that could cross the Atlantic under its own power. The longest nonstop flight that had then been made was only about 1,200 miles, and that had been accomplished under ideal conditions, in the immediate neighborhood of a flying field where any ordinary mishap would have resulted merely in an enforced landing. The shortest route across the Atlantic required one hop under very difficult conditions of at least 1,330 miles. The Chief Constructor of the United States Navy wanted an aicraft that would bridge that gap, and, if possible, the full 1,933 miles from Newfoundland to Ireland.  

The resulting flying boats were designated NC, the N for Navy and the C for Curtiss, because they were the joint production of the Navy and the Curtiss Engineering Corporation. The designers of the NC were Mr. G. H. Curtiss and Mr. W. L. Gilmore, of the Curtiss Co., and Commanders Westervelt, Richardson, and Hunsaker, of the Navy.

Westervelt headed the Naval Aircraft Factory in Philadelphia from 1921 to 1927. He retired from the U.S. Navy with the rank of Captain in 1927.

Aviation Career: During his naval career Westervelt was also involved in naval aviation. Westervelt became friends with Boeing and worked with him on seaplanes and help co-found what would become the Boeing Corporation. He left Pacific Aero Products after 1916 after being transferred to the east coast by the U.S. Navy. Following his retirement from the U.S. Navy Westervelt joined Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company to work on the Curtiss NC float plane and later became vice-president with Curtiss-Wright. From 1930 to 1931 Westervelt went to China to help out with the China National Aviation Corporation.

Westervelt was an U.S. Navy engineer who created the company "Pacific Aero Products Co.", the predecessor of the Boeing Corporation, together with William Boeing. Westervelt left the company in 1916 and Boeing changed the name of the company to the Boeing Airplane Company the following year. He was a graduate of the United States Naval Academy and Massachusetts Institute of Technology in naval (aeronautical) engineering. 

   
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 Duty Stations
US Naval Academy Annapolis (Faculty Staff)Naval Postgraduate School (Faculty Staff)US Navy
  1899-1903, US Naval Academy Annapolis (Faculty Staff)
  1909-1911, Naval Construction and Engineering Course @ MIT
  1911-1914, NAVBASE Seattle
  1914-1916, Naval Air Stations
  1916-1918, Naval Aircraft Factory, Philadelphia
  1918-1920, LTA Rockaway Beach
  1918-1921, Naval Aircraft Factory, Philadelphia
  1921-1927, 135X, Naval Aircraft Factory, Philadelphia
 Colleges Attended 
United States Naval AcademyMassachusetts Institute of Technology
  1899-1903, United States Naval Academy
  1909-1911, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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