Retracing the Birth of Air Travel: A Creative Project

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McDonald, Collin
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Today’s modern aviation industry is a byproduct of events—both positive and negative—that have molded flight over its century of existence. Yet one historical flight altered the course of aviation’s history more drastically than any other since the Wright Brother’s initial conquest into the skies: Cal Rodgers’ Vin Fiz flight. This flight was the very first successful transcontinental flight and proved that aviation could be used as a means of transportation. The author of this thesis researched the first flight, planned a modern replication, and successfully retraced the flight from New York to Los Angeles as a creative project for the Honors College undergraduate thesis requirement. This gave him the unique privilege to experience Rodgers’ trip as a pilot. This thesis contrasts and compares the two flights and discusses the changes that have taken place since Rodger’s trip in 1911.
aviation, Vin Fiz, air travel, airlines, aviation history, aircraft, flight, flying