President Roosevelt’s personal plane had an elevator (Sep, 1945)

President Roosevelt’s personal plane which is in reality a specially designed Douglas C-54, was used by the late Chief Executive on several historic trips. Elevator made it possible for him to come aboard in his wheelchair easily.



By Corley McDarment

Imagine a ski-jumper, poised in mid-air, suddenly soaring off across the valley; or a high diver swooping to the surface of the water, and then up again. Thrills such as they would experience are yours with safety in a glider.

AMERICA is filled with thousands of model airplane pilots. They know more than the rudiments of aviation. They have built their own ships, small though they are, and they have made them fly. The next logical step is to build actual working models and then “hit the air” with them. A fine start has already been made in this line. America has never gone into soaring flight like Germany, but if certain plans and the natural momentum together, get going, the sun may soon be obscured in the late afternoons by young men and boys up in the sky—in gliders.

Skeleton Is Adopted as Symbol by Fliers of “Jinx” Air Fleet (Dec, 1924)

I love the fact that Popular Mechanics thought this was newsworthy.

Skeleton Is Adopted as Symbol by Fliers of “Jinx” Air Fleet
To show their unbelief in the influence the squadron number thirteen may have on the luck of the unit, aviators of the organization have adopted the skeleton as their insigne. Each airplane is adorned with a large, bright painting of the “grim reaper,” scythe in hand, which can be readily seen at considerable distance. One of the craft bearing the symbol was successfully piloted through a severe storm and landed at the home field without damage to operators or ship.

American Airlines Ad: Think of her as your mother. (Oct, 1968)

That’s kind of creepy.
American Airlines: serving all of your oedipal aviation needs since 1968.

Think of her as your mother.

She only wants what’s best for you.
A cool drink. A good dinner. A soft pillow and a warm blanket.
This is not just maternal instinct. It’s the result of the longest
Stewardess training in the industry.
Training in service, not just a beauty course.
Service, after all, is what makes professional travellers prefer American.
And makes new travellers want to keep on flying with us.
So we see that every passenger gets the same professional treatment.
That’s the American Way.

Fly the American Way
American Airlines

Analyzing Air Car Designs (Jun, 1960)

Analyzing Air Car Designs

How well do the air cars perform?

Here is the full story – – what makes them go, the problems they face and what their future looks like


CALL them air cars. Call them ground effect vehicles. Or call them air cushion sleds.

But, above all, call them experimental. All the models currently under development pose some difficult problems for the designers and engineers working on them. Such problems as:

• How can we make them fly high enough to clear rocks, fences, high waves and other obstacles?

• What is the best way to steer them?

• Will they perform adequately at high speed, if at all?

FIRST Transatlantic Air Line LINKS TWO CONTINENTS (Feb, 1933)


By Rene Leonhardt

SLIDING down the map 1,800 miles from the bulging west coast of upper Africa to the projecting northeastern tip of South America, a few weeks hence, a flying boat will inaugurate the world’s first regularly-scheduled transatlantic airline.

This aerial bridge across the South Atlantic will link Bathurst, just west of the Sahara, in British Gambia, with Pernambuco, south of the Amazon, in Brazil. It will clip nine days from the traveling time between Berlin, Germany, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

At first, the big machines, on a biweekly schedule, will carry only mail and express. Later, passengers will be accommodated as well. Following the trail blazed by daring ocean flyers, the pilots will take off surrounded by elaborate precautions and aided by the last word in navigation instruments. For behind the project lies more than three years of intensive preparation by the Lufthansa, the great air transportation organization of Germany.

Auto Lights Save Planes Lost in Fog (Jan, 1933)

Auto Lights Save Planes Lost in Fog
Summoned by radio, 2,500 motorists lined an unused California field the other day to rescue two jog-bound Navy planes. While the cars’ headlights formed an improvised beacon, as shown above, a big transport craft found the flyers and led them to a safe landing. They had gasoline left for only twenty minutes’ flying and faced the prospect of diving through the fog to an almost certain crack-up

Pilot “Treads” Air On Jet Board (Sep, 1955)

This looks pretty fun.

Pilot “Treads” Air On Jet Board

Intensified study of vertical take-off principles has brought forth some brand-new ideas in aviation, the latest of which is a jet board. It is buckled to the pilot’s feet and supports him in flight by means of air jets from an attached hose. To hover, the pilot stands still, and to move, he merely leans in the direction in which he wants to travel. Tests of a simplified research model by the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics show that the pilot has full control over the board, even in gusty winds up to 16 knots.

The Challenge of Space (Jan, 1956)

The Challenge of Space
The dream of human flight is as old as man—and the ultimate goal is the stars.

Recorder Logs Flight (Nov, 1937)

This is the birth of the airplane black box. Doesn’t look all that sturdy, does it?

Recorder Logs Flight
Flight analyzers installed on passenger planes of a leading American air line will record the craft’s altitude during flight, the amount of time a “gyro” or automatic pilot is in use, and the number and time of radio reports to the ground. In case of a crash, the records may help shed light on the cause.