black and white photo of Ralph S. Barnaby in the cockpit of a glider, inscribed by him below the image "Just after landing in first / glider flight from a rigid airship / Lakehurst, N.J. Jan. 31, 1930 / Ralph S. Burnaby." Ralph S. Barnaby.

black and white photo of Ralph S. Barnaby in the cockpit of a glider, inscribed by him below the image "Just after landing in first / glider flight from a rigid airship / Lakehurst, N.J. Jan. 31, 1930 / Ralph S. Burnaby."

(1930). Photograph, 10 x 8 inches, of a smiling Barnaby landing on a snowy field in a Kegel-Flugzeugbau Kassel glider, captioned on verso: "Lt. Comdr. Barnaby in glider / Had Glider license No. 1 in U.S." Stamped on verso: "In Publishing, Credit Must Be Given as Follows 'Official Photograph U.S. Navy.'" Nice clean printed, creases at two corners, a third chipped (not into image). (7179). Item #59417

Barnaby (1893-1986) reminisced about flying a glider in a brief sketch he wrote for the July, 1953, edition of 'Aero Digest': "Back during the summers of 1929 and 1930, the American Motorless Aviation Corporation had a gliding school on the sand dunes of Cape Cod. In those days, gliders were launched by the old bungee slingshot method where a glider was hooked to the vertex of a heavy shock-absorber cord, about 50' long on each leg. Three to six boys — depending on the power desired — would group themselves at each of the outer ends of the V and, while the glider was held back by its tail and supported at the wing-tip, they would walk out ten paces, then start running, stretching the shock-cord. At the proper time, the command "Let go!" was shouted, the glider released, and the launching was under way. One day, someone suggested using horses for the purpose. By hitching a horse to each end of the bungee, the launching crew could be reduced to a rider for each horse, one man on the wing-tip, and two to hold the tail. It seemed like a sensible plan, so two horses were drafted for the job, and the shock-cord securely tied to their harnesses. The call 'Let go!' was given, and the glider started forward. It immediately became apparent that there was not quite enough room between the horses for the glider to pass through. Additionally, the launching was not powerful enough to enable the glider to soar over them. Hearing excited screams of the onlookers, the riders looked over their shoulders to see the glider bearing down on them, and dove off the horses into the sand. The glider whizzed by, just high enough so that the wing-tips grazed each horse on the top of the head, then went on to make a somewhat shaky forced landing. The horses, however, surprised and obviously perturbed by the intruder, lit out at full speed in opposite directions, stretching the shock-cord between them. The further they went, the slower their progress, until finally they were pawing the sand but making no headway. At that point, the shock-cord, which had become chafed at the center where the launching ring was attached, broke! Did you ever see a horse turn a somersault? That pair executed two beauties and then lit out for parts unknown. That ended operations for the day — it was long after dark before the horses were found and retrieved — and for the season as far as the horses were concerned. We couldn't drag them anywhere near a glider thereafter, so thus ended the experimental application of real 'horsepower' to gliding on Cape Cod."

Price: $750.00

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