Air Force Logistics Command

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Air Force Logistics Command
USAF - Logistics Command.png
Air Force Logistics Command
Active 1944–1992
Country United States
Branch United States Army Air Forces (1944–1947)
United States Air Force (1947–1992)
Type Major Command
Role Logistics, Depot-Level aircraft maintenance
Garrison/HQ Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio
Nickname(s) AFLC

Air Force Logistics Command (AFLC) was a United States Air Force command. Its headquarters was located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. On July 1, 1992, AFLC and Air Force Systems Command were merged to form the Air Force Materiel Command, also located at Wright-Patterson AFB.


Although the logistics function can be traced before the earliest days of the Air Service, when the Equipment Division of the U.S. Army Signal Corps established a headquarters for its new Airplane Engineering Department at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio, a World War I experimental engineering facility, the functional antecedents of Air Force Logistics Command (AFLC) usually are not traced beyond October 15, 1926, when the Materiel Division was set up near Dayton, Ohio. The Materiel Division, controlled by the Office of the Chief of the Air Corps (OCAC), possessed many characteristics of a major command. It brought together four major functions performed previously by three organizations: research and development (R&D), procurement, supply, and maintenance.

The Air Corps Maintenance Command was established under the Materiel Division on June 25, 1941, to control supply and maintenance. On December 11, 1941, with United States newly engaged in World War II, these four functions were divided between two organizations.

The Air Service Command[edit]

Maintenance Command was redesignated Air Service Command and kept responsibility for supply and maintenance functions.[1]

The chief of the Air Service Command, Brig. Gen. Henry J. F. Miller, was charged with supervision in the United States of all AAF activities pertaining to storage and issue of supplies procured by the Air Corps and with overhaul, repair, maintenance, and salvage of all Air Corps equipment and supplies beyond the limits of the first two echelons of maintenance.[2] The command was directed to compile AAF requirements for Air Corps and other supplies, to procure equipment and supplies needed for the operation and maintenance of AAF units, to prepare and issue all technical orders and instructions regarding Air Corps materiel, and to exercise technical control* over air depots outside of the continental limits of the United States. In addition, ASC received responsibility for coordination with the Army technical services in the supply and maintenance of equipment and supplies procured by them for the use of the AAF. The new command was separated from the Materiel Division but remained a part of the Office of the Chief of Air Corps.

Between October 1941 and March 1942 the Air Service Command remained under the jurisdiction of the Chief of the Air Corps. Immediately after the beginning of the war it moved its headquarters to Washington, where it began operations on 15 December 1941. But a large portion of the headquarters organization remained at Wright Field, where it carried on the greater part of the command's activities. On 15 December 1942 its headquarters moved back to Dayton, establishing itself at Patterson Field, immediately adjacent to Wright Field.

On 9 March 1942, the Air Service Command now became one of the major AAF commands, with relatively clear lines of responsibility and authority. Four air service area commands, successors to the maintenance wings, had been activated in December 1941 to supervise the depots in given geographical areas. The depots, of which there were eleven by April 1942, became the centers of depot control areas, which directed the activities of subdepots within defined geographical limits. Unfortunately, the boundaries of some of the depot control areas overlapped those of air service areas, and since the depots were the real focal points of supply and maintenance activities, the air service areas never attained the status of fully functioning ASC subcommands. The air service areas were disbanded on 1 February 1943, to be succeeded by air depot control area commands, which were simply the eleven former depot control areas under a new name. The elimination of the four air service areas was apparently justified by subsequent operations; according to Maj. Gen. Walter H. Frank, commander of the ASC, the step proved "most beneficial." In May 1943 the air depot control area commands were redesignated air service commands with appropriate geographical designations, and from then to the end of the war the ASC conducted its operations in the continental United States through its eleven air service commands, each serving a separate geographical area. These air service commands included the Middletown Air Service Command (Olmsted Field, Middletown, Pennsylvania), Mobile ASC, Ogden Air Service Command, Oklahoma City Air Service Command, Rome Air Service Command,[3] Sacramento Air Service Command, the San Antonio Air Service Command, the San Bernardino Air Service Command, Warner Robins Air Service Command, Warner Robins, as well as five-six others. In 1944 the air service commands were redesignated air technical service commands.

Materiel Command[edit]

The Materiel Division was assumed responsibility for R&D and procurement, and was redesignated Air Corps Materiel Command on April 1, 1942. This became Air Force Materiel Command in April 1942; Materiel Command in April 1943, and AAF Materiel Command on January 15, 1944. On July 17, 1944, Air Service Command and AAF MAteriel Command were placed under a new organization, AAF Materiel and Services. On August 31, 1944 AAF Materiel and Services was redesignated Army Air Forces Technical Service Command.[4]

The functions of research and development and logistics were operated separately during World War II until they were reunited for several years in the late 1940s under Air Materiel Command. Among its forces was the Air Materiel Force, European Area, which was transferred from USAFE in on 1 January 1956. Air Materiel Force, European Area, at Châteauroux-Déols Air Base, France, and Air Materiel Force, Pacific Area, at Tachikawa Air Base, Japan, were of Numbered Air Force status.[5] Often these formations supervised Air Depot Wings, for example the 75th Air Depot Wing which was based at Chinhae Air Base in South Korea during the Korean War.

In 1950, research and development were split off into a separate formation, the Air Research and Development Command. From the early 1950s to 1962, the 3079th Aviation Depot Wing under AMC, headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, was a weapons of mass destruction unit of key strategic importance.[6] It was active until 1962.

In 1961, Air Materiel Command became the Air Force Logistics Command, while the Air Research and Development Command gained responsibility for weapon system acquisition and was renamed the Air Force Systems Command. On July 1, 1992, the Air Force Logistics Command and Air Force Systems Command were reintegrated to form the new Air Force Materiel Command.[7]


  • Established as Army Air Forces Materiel and Services on July 14, 1944
Organized as a major command on July 17, 1944
Redesignated: Army Air Forces Technical Service Command on August 31, 1944
Redesignated: Air Technical Service Command on July 1, 1945
Redesignated: Air Materiel Command on March 9, 1946
Redesignated: Air Force Logistics Command on April 1, 1961
Inactivated on July 1, 1992

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ravenstein, 'The organization and lineage of the United States Air Force,' via DIANE Publishing, 7-8.
  2. ^ Craven and Cate, The Army Air Forces in World War II: Men and Planes, 367.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ Ravenstein, Charles A. (1996), The Organization and Lineage of the United States Air Force. United States Air Force Historical Research Center ISBN 0-912799-17-X
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Air Force Logistics Command Fact Sheet". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 2012-10-07. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Elliot V. Converse III, Rearming for the Cold War 1945 -- 1960, Government Printing Office