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On This Day: 1919

Aviation events for 1919

February 5: The first regular, daily passenger service in the world is launched at Berlin’s city airfield. A German airline, Deutsche Luft Reederei, operates the new service on route from Berlin to Weimar via Leipzig.
February 8: Lafayette Escadrille, the US volunteer squadron serving in the French Army is transferred to the US Army and redesignated the 103rd Aero Squadron.
February 8: The Farman brothers make the first scheduled international flight in Europe when a Farman F.60 Goliath piloted by M. Lucien Bossoutrot carries a token load of military passengers between Toussus le Noble airfield outside Paris and Kenley in southern England.
February 13: The first post-war French commercial service is established on a route from Paris to Lille for the carriage of food and clothing to France’s northern departments.
February 21: The prototype of the first US-designed fighter to enter large-scale production, the Thomas-Morse MB-3 (to be made by Boeing), makes its maiden flight.
March 3: Airplane builder William E. Boeing and Eddie Hubbard of Hubbard Air Service make the first international airmail flight from Seattle, Washington to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
March 9: U.S. Navy Lt. Comdr. E. O. McDonnell makes the first successful flight from a gun turret platform on a U.S. navy battleship. The USS Texas is anchored in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba for the test.
April 13: The Vickers Vimy Commercial, a civilian version of the bomber with an enclosed fuselage capable of holding a maximum of ten passengers, makes its maiden flight in Kent, England. Read more...
April 28: American Leslie Irvin makes the first jump from an airplane using a free-type (to be opened at will by a rip chord) back pack parachute and lands at McCook Field in Dayton, Ohio. The parachute is designed by Floyd Smith.
April 30: The Air Navigation Directions, laying down rules for aircraft registration and pilot licensing, are published in London.
May 6: The first commercial flight, from Canada to United States, occurs as a Canadian Curtiss aircraft flies 150 pounds of raw furs from Toronto to Elizabeth, New Jersey. It is not a non-stop flight.
May 10: The recently formed Avro Transport Company in Manchester opens Britain’s first scheduled air service. A fare of four guineas (£4.20) is being charged for the journey of 50 miles. The company is using four of Avro 504K aircraft, modified to carry two passengers.
May 15: The U.S. Post Office Department begins its first air mail service operations between Chicago and Cleveland, later extended to New York and San Francisco. A de Havilland D.H.4-A is carrying the mail.
May 16: The first transatlantic flight is made in stages by the U.S. Navy’s Curtis N-4 seaplane flown by Lt. Cdr. A. C. Read and his crew.
May 17: The War Department in Washington, D.C. orders the use of the national insignia on all U.S. military aircraft.
June 12: France’s Baroness Raymonde de Laroche breaks the women’s altitude record by flying to a height of 16,896 feet.
June 14: The first direct non-stop crossing of the Atlantic by airplane is made by a British two-man team. Capt. John Alcock and Lt. Arthur Whitten-Brown fly a Vickers Vimy bomber from St. Johns, Newfoundland to Clifden, Ireland. They fly some 1,950 miles in 16 hours, 27 minutes.
June 25: The world’s most modern airliner, the Junkers F-13, makes its first flight at Dessau, Germany. It is made entirely of metal, with a strong, corrugated outer skin and cantilever wing structure, without struts or bracing wires.
July 2: The first crossing of the Atlantic by airship, as well as the first double-crossing (return flight), is made by the British rigid airship, R-34. This giant dirigible, which flies non-stop from Scotland to Long Island, New York, has a 30-man crew and is piloted by Major G.H. Scott.
July 3: Designed and built by the Engineering Division of the U.S. Bureau of Aircraft Production, the first of four XB-1As (originally designated USXB-1A) makes its first flight at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio.
July 6: The first person to arrive in the United States by air from Europe is Englishman Flt. Lt. J. E. M. Pritchard. He arrives with the airship R.34, which has entered American skies after leaving Scotland on July 2 to cross the North Atlantic.
July 13: The British military airship R.34, operated by the Royal Air Force (RAF), accomplishes the first two-way transatlantic air crossing. The outward journey is also the first air crossing of the Atlantic from east to west.
July 18: Self-styled Baroness Raymonde de Laroche, the first Frenchwoman to get her flying license, is killed in a flying accident in Northern France.
July 21: Anthony Fokker founds the Dutch Aircraft Company at Schipol, near Amsterdam.
August 7: Capt. Ernest C. Hoy becomes the first pilot to fly over the Canadian Rockies when he carries mail from Vancouver, British Columbia to Calgary, Alberta in a Curtiss JN-4 biplane.
August 19: A Curtiss 18-T flown by Curtiss test pilot Roland Rholfs establishes a new world speed record of 163 mph carrying a load of 1,076 lbs.
August 20: The first regularly scheduled passenger service by airship begins in Berlin with a Zeppelin LX 120 Bodenese.
August 25: The first daily commercial scheduled international air passenger service starts between London and Paris. A single fare to Paris is 21 pounds.
August 28: The International Air Traffic Association (IATA) is formed at The Hague, Holland.
October 7: KLM is founded.
November 12: Keith and Ross Smith set out to fly a Vickers Vimy, registered G-EAOU, from England to Australia, the first flight between these two places. They arrive in Darwin on December 18.
November 20: The 1st municipal airport in the United States opens in Tucson, Arizona and is still in use today.
December 5: Avianca commences operations as SCADTA.
December 10: Capts. Ross Smith and Keith Smith become the first Australians to fly directly between Great Britain and Australia, a distance of 11,340 mi., after flying 135 hr. 55 min. at an average speed of 83 MPH.

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