There's A Unique Boneyard Hiding In Northeast Ohio That's Eerie Yet Beautiful
If you ever heard rumors about a World War II airplane boneyard in Ohio, you heard right.
In Newbury, Ohio, resident Walter Soplata hosted a collection of aircraft, starting with a biplane from the late 1920s and going on to add aircraft from the 1940s through the ’70s, when Soplata stopped adding planes to his collection. Though often called an airplane graveyard, Soplata would’ve preferred the term “sanctuary,” as he was saving the aircraft from being turned into scrap metal. The sanctuary featured approximately 20 stray aircraft that Soplata collected from his scrapyard job in Cleveland, “junking thousands of warplane engines that were declared surplus,” according to his son Wally Soplata in a November 2007 issue of Air and Space Magazine.
This video by Michael Wendell titled “Airplane Junkyard” is amazing.
Have you been to this World War II aircraft boneyard in Ohio? We’d love to hear about your experience.
If you love exploring the forgotten corners of the Buckeye State, check out this road trip to the most abandoned places in Ohio.
More to Explore
Aviation History In Ohio
What is Ohio’s connection to aviation history?
Ohio has strong ties to aviation history. In fact the Buckeye State was even declared the “birthplace of aviation” in 2003 by the United States Congress, because famed American aviation pioneers Wilbur and Orville Wright resided in Dayton, Ohio. The National Museum of the United States Air Force is now just outside of Dayton in Riverside, Ohio. It’s the biggest Air Force museum in the country, displaying over 360 aircraft and receiving about a million visitors a year. Famous astronauts Neil Armstrong and John Glenn were also both born in Ohio, and more Ohio natives have become astronauts than natives of any other state.
Are there any other aviation themed places to visit in Ohio?
Aside from the National Museum of the United States Air Force, Ohio is also home to the MAPS Air Museum in Green, and the Tri-State Warbird Museum in Cincinnati. If you’re looking for a unique, aviation-themed dining experience, you can also visit the 94th Aero Squadron restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. Watch planes land through the windows at the nearby John Glenn Columbus International Airport while you dine surrounded by aviation and WWI and WWII memorabilia. The restaurant even has a P-51 Mustang on display outside, and named itself after a famous WWI unit which included Columbus native Eddie Rickenbacker.