Roswell Is Known For Aviation Stories. Have You Heard Of The Aircraft Boneyard?

When someone mentions Roswell, typically one thing comes to mind: the 1947 UFO incident that took place, the alleged government cover-up, and endless conspiracy theories. Did you know, however, that Roswell is also home to another fascinating aircraft history?

The 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group, otherwise known as “The Boneyard,” is the largest storage area for retired aircraft in the nation. Active since 1946, the Boneyard is used to store, scrap, and salvage retired aircraft that is no longer deemed air-worthy.

The Center’s sprawling grounds sit adjacent to Roswell’s tiny airport terminal, where American is the only carrier currently offering regular scheduled passenger flights – three per day to Dallas/Fort Worth and one to Phoenix.

But it’s the flow of older, retiring jets that are the real lifeblood of the Roswell International Air Center.

Planes can sit indefinitely in storage here, where the dry desert air helps keep the idle aircraft from corroding. Some find second lives, taken in by cargo carriers or by smaller airlines in the developing world. Others face a stark end – raided for parts or scrapped altogether.

But not every airplane at the boneyard is scrapped; one in particular used to belong to the King himself, Elvis Presley!

Beyond the business side of the boneyard, there’s plenty of interest in the facility from aviation enthusiasts. People always want to come see it and experience it for themselves. To see an airline in kind of a different light. They just want to come out and see the planes in different states of disrepair.

What do you think of the aircraft boneyard that exists in Roswell, New Mexico? Is it a piece of history or just a junkyard? Use the comments section below and share your thoughts. We’d love to hear from you!

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