Dobbins Air Reserve Base is a United States Air Force reserve air base situated in Marietta, Georgia, a suburb about 20 miles north of Atlanta. Initially known as Dobbins Air Force Base, it was named in honor of Captain Charles M. Dobbins, a World War II pilot who was killed near Sicily.
Dobbins ARB has two runways which it splits with the General Lucius D. Clay National Guard Center to its south. The main runway is 10,000 feet long and 300 feet wide.
Over 14,000 flight operations take place yearly making Dobbins a very active facility with a wide variety of air traffic operations from all branches of the military and other US government agencies. This air traffic atmosphere happens within the same location as the busiest airport in the world, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, and is as active as numerous medium-sized commercial airports.
Like the majority of U.S. bases, Dobbins ARB has had to push back several attempts at closing it, as part of simplifying the US’s military and reducing needless spending. Dobbins ARB is the only U.S. military center left in north Georgia following the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission recommendations were passed.
Up to the late 20th century, the oldest building on base was part of Lockheed Martin, and was built prior to the Civil War. As the story goes, the single reason the building wasn’t burned to the ground throughout General Sherman’s “March to the Sea” in 1864 was due to the building’s British citizen owner, had flown the British flag during the control of Marietta.
Next to Dobbins ARB’s main gate lies a B-29 named “Sweet Eloise”, which is on public display as a monument to World War II bomber production plant at the site. At least two Marietta built B-29s has endured the years. One is on presentation at the Georgia Veterans State Park and the other is located at Robins Air Force Base’s Museum of Flight. In 1995, Lockheed joined with Martin Marietta to become Lockheed Martin. The C-130 Hercules remains in production 60 years after the initial one was built in 1955. Dobbins ARB has its own ZIP code, 30069, and Lockheed Martin also has its own ZIP code, 30063, but Marietta is the only city considered admissible by the United States Postal Service.