Early Airplanes

Time Frame: Early 1900's

Iowans were among the first pilots to fly airplanes in the early 1900s.
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“From Here to There,” The Iowa Heritage: Program # 6, Iowa Public Television, 1978.

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Oh, most the people who flying nowadays are small town mechanics with invented minds like Oscar Solbrig from Davenport. He built his own flying machine and traveled around the country doing shows. He says that these flying machines can fly year round, carrying mail and passengers. Billy Robinson from Grinnell, he started out as a bicycle mechanic, but later he too built his own airplane. And if you’ve ever been around Grinnell you’ve probably seen him flying around up there. The fall of last year he broke the record for non-stop flying. He flew all the way from Des Moines to Kentland, Indiana carrying mail from Des Moines and Grinnell. I grant ya that flying is more like entertainment now like that race between Eddie Rickenbacker in a car and Lincoln Beachey in an airplane we saw at the State Fair. But it did serve to show that airplanes are faster than automobiles.


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