Hill Field was activated on 7 November 1940 when Lieutenant Colonel Morris Berman arrived for duty as the first commanding officer. The base was named after Major Ployer P. Hill, a test pilot who was killed in a crash of the prototype of the B-17 in 1935 at Wright Field, Ohio. Strategically located close to transportation lines, the base was operated by Ogden Air Depot as a maintenance and supply depot.
Four 7,500-foot runways were completed in September 1941, and by 1943 construction of the base was nearly complete. Aircraft maintenance and depot supply began in mid-1941 and overhaul of B-17s in April 1942; in February 1943 a B-24 assembly line was opened.
The Ogden Air Depot has changed names four times: the Ogden Air Service Command, Ogden Air Technical Service Command, Ogden Air Materiel Area (OOAMA) and on 1 April 1974 the Ogden Air Logistics Center (OO-ALC). Hill Field was renamed Hill Air Force Base on 5 February 1948.
During the Korean War, Ogden overhauled B-29 and B-26 bombers. Jet fighter maintenance began in 1953 with the F-89 and F-84; and in 1957 with the F-102 and F-101. Maintenance of the F-4 began in 1965 and of the F-16 in 1979, while the C-130 and OV-10 were assigned to the base in 1988.