Dr. Tom Crouch, senior curator at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., will present “Aviation in 1909 and Beloit’s A.P. Warner” Nov. 7 at the Beloit College in celebration of Wisconsin’s Centennial of Flight.
Crouch’s presentation is part of a yearlong series of events that concludes in Beloit, where Wisconsin’s first flight by Arthur Pratt “A.P.” Warner took place on Nov. 4, 1909. Warner also holds the distinction of being the first private individual in the United States to purchase an airplane.
The Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame (WAHF) planned a series of events throughout the year celebrating Wisconsin’s Centennial of Flight, including statewide history presentations, an educational exhibit, and a quarter-scale model of the first airplane that flew in Wisconsin, a Glenn Curtiss design. WAHF asked members of EAA Chapter 60, Beloit/Janesville, to build the model. Since the model’s debut in May at the Wisconsin Aviation Conference in Eau Claire, it has traveled more than 1,000 miles on Wisconsin’s roads for exhibit locations in Oshkosh, Manitowoc, Sheboygan, Beloit, Janesville, Waukesha, La Crosse, Wausau, and at the Wisconsin state capitol in Madison.
Centennial events will also take place in Beloit on Wednesday, Nov. 4, including rededication of a Wisconsin Historical Marker that commemorates Warner’s accomplishments, a reenactment flight, and a Wisconsin Air National Guard flyover (weather permitting) beginning at 9 a.m. In addition, WAHF will present the model to the Beloit Historical Society at a 5 p.m. ceremony.
There is no charge for these events and all are open to the public. Events are co-sponsored by the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame, Visit Beloit, Warner Electric, and the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium.
For more information: 608-339-7191 or AviationHallOfFameWisconsin.com.