Learning Center Our Enshrinees

Glenn Hammond Curtiss

  • Formed the G.H. Curtiss Manufacturing Company, whose lightweight air cooled engines were masterpieces, and then, the best available in the United States.
  • Met with Captain Thomas Scott Baldwin (enshrined 1964) and sold him a two-cylinder air-cooled motor of 5 horsepower for his airship, the California Arrow. The California Arrow’s first flight is considered the first successful dirigible flight in America.
  • Credited with the development of ailerons, which resulted in a lawsuit by the Wright Brothers who claimed ailerons infringed on their wing warping concept.
  • Joined the Aerial Experiment Association (AEA) headed by Alexander Graham Bell in 1907.
  • Won the first Gordon Bennett Trophy in 1909 with an average speed of 46 miles per hour.
  • Won the Scientific American Trophy with planes built by Alexander Graham Bell’s Aerial Experiment Association in 1908, 1909, and 1910.
  • Over his career he produced and sold the first private airplane, received pilot’s license #1, designed and constructed the first successful pontoon aircraft in America, invented dual pilot control, and designed retractable landing gear.

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