Dear Mr. Downing,
Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!
We searched the Records of the Civil Aeronautics Board (Record Group 197) for the 1930s and were unable to locate files relating to licensing individual pilots. Records of this type would have been disposed of by the Civil Aeronautics Board and its predecessor agencies after their initial administrative use.
According to information we found online, he served as a pilot for the Post Office Department and was later a civilian instructor for the military during World War II. We suggest that you request a copy of his Official Personnel File (OPF). OPFs and medical information for individuals who worked for the U.S. government in a civilian capacity prior to 1952 are in the custody of the National Archives at St. Louis (RL-SL). Please email RL-SL via email at firstname.lastname@example.org and include the full name used during Federal employment, date of birth, Social Security Number (if applicable), name and location of the employing Federal agency, beginning and ending dates of Federal Service. If you do not know all this information, you may omit what you do not know, however the more information you provide, the easier it will be to locate the correct files. For more information, the web site is https://www.archives.gov/st-louis/opf.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RL-SL. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.
You may also wish to contact the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the United States Postal Service Historian for further research assistance.
We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!