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On This Day: 1911

Aviation events for 1911

January 18: Eugene B. Ely makes the first landing by an aircraft on a ship when he flies his Curtiss pusher biplane from Selfridge Field near San Francisco to a specially prepared wooden deck on the stern of the armored cruiser USS Pennsylvania.
February 18: First official government air mail flight is made in India as French pilot Henri Pequet flies 6,500 letters a distance of about five miles (8 km).
February 21: A new 1910 Wright Type B Flyer owned by Collier’s magazine publisher Robert F. Collier, arrives at San Antonio, Texas on rent to the U.S. Army for $1.00 per month to supplement the aging Wright biplane first accepted on August 2, 1909.
March 3: With Capt. Benjamin D. Foulois navigating a course and Phillip Parmelee at the controls, the Wright Type B on loan from Robert F. Collier sets an official U.S. cross-country record from Laredo to Eagle Pass, Texas. It flies the 106 miles in 2 hours 10 minutes.
March 16: The first certificate of airworthiness awarded to an airplane in Britain is signed by Mervyn O’Gorman, superintendent of the Balloon Factory at Farnborough, covering the Farman III Type Militaire purchased by the British Army during the second half of 1910.
March 17: U.S. Navy Lt. John Rodgers reports to the Wright Co. at Dayton, Ohio for flying instructions. On March 9, the Wrights had offered to train one Navy pilot if that service bought a Wright flying machine at a cost $5,000. The conditional offer was later replaced by one that provided unconditional free training for one would-be Navy pilot.
April 11: The U.S. Army sets up its first permanent flying school at College Park, Maryland.
April 12: Pierre Prier makes the first non-stop passenger flight, traveling from London to Paris.
April 12: Lt. T. Gordon Ellyson becomes the Navy’s first pilot.
April 24: Lts. M. Longmore and C. R. Samson are the first British Royal Navy officers to qualify as pilots, after just two month’s training.
May 4: The U.S. War Department approves a suggestion that S.C.No.1 (the Wright Flyer accepted by the Army August 2, 1909) be put at the disposal of the Smithsonian Institution for exhibition purposes following refurbishment.
May 11: Edouard Niéport, a racing cyclist before he went into aircraft construction, sets a new speed record of 74.4mph flying his “Nieuport” monoplane powered by a 28-hp engine.
June 26: As spectators watch in amazement, Lincoln Beachey flies his Curtiss pusher biplane over Horseshoe Falls, the most spectacular of the Niagara Falls.
June 28: The first airplane charter flight is made by English aviator Thomas Sopwith who is hired by Wannamaker’s New York store to deliver repaired glasses to Philadelphia merchant W. A. Burpee.
June 30: The Curtiss A-1 seaplane is tested for the first time by Glenn Curtiss.
July 21: Denise Moore crashes and dies on a solo flight in a Farman airplane, the first woman killed in a plane.
August 2: The first woman in the United States licensed as a qualified pilot is Harriet Quimby, a drama critic.
August 18: The British F.E.2 biplane makes its first flight from Farnborough, England piloted by its designer, Geoffrey de Havilland.
August 19: British naval officer Comdr. Charles R. Samson sets a new British endurance record of 4 hours, 58 minutes, 30 seconds. The Short S.38 biplane has special tanks allowing sufficient fuel for more than 4 hours flying.
August 29: Mrs. A. Hewlett is the first British woman to gain a pilot’s license.
September 9: The 1st mail carried by air in the United Kingdom is delivered. The mail contains messages for King George V and other members of the British royal family.
September 23: Earl Ovington carries the 1st airmail in the United States in a Ble´riot monoplane from Nassau Boulevard Aerodome, Long Island to Mineola, Long Island.
November 5: Calbraith Rodgers becomes the 1st person to cross the United States in an airplane.

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