Brooklyn’s Barren Island is home to Floyd Bennett Field, New York’s first municipal airport built in 1931. Sections of the site has been abandoned since the Navy deactivated in the airfield in 1971, but in its heyday, Floyd Bennett Field saw ascents by historic aviators such as Amelia Earhart and Howard Hughes. Brooklyn-based artist Aaron Asis has shared with us his photos from a recent exploration of some of the abandoned buildings that still occupy the airfield. Get a glimpse into the air fields storied past in Asis’s photo essay below. 

The airfield was named after Floyd Bennett, a World War I aviator who was recruited to pilot an expedition to the North Pole. It has been the site of many historic flights, one of the most memorable being the outing by Howard Hughes in 1938 to circumnavigate the Earth in record time.

In 1941, the airfield shifted from a municipal airport to a Naval Air Station, where those who made and tested aircrafts worked during World War II. It soon became the busiest naval air station in the US. The NYPD and FDNY have made use of the facilities post-war, mostly for storage.

For an inside scoop into the history of this abandoned airfield, check out The Top 10 Secrets of NYC’s Floyd Bennett Field and see more abandoned spots in NYC by checking out Inside the Abandoned City Hall Station in NYC.