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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Shafter in Kern County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Site of Gossamer Condor Flight

 
 
Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, June 2, 2010
1. Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker
Inscription.  This plaque at Shafter Airport commemorates the world's first man-powered flight to complete the Kremer Circuit, August 23, 1977. The circuit, a figure eight around two pylons one-half mile apart, was completed in six minutes, twenty-two seconds. The plane was designed by Dr. Paul MacCready, Jr. and flown by Bryan Allen. A cash prize of 50,000 pounds was awarded by the Royal Aeronautical Society, London, England.
 
Erected 1979 by State Department of Parks and Recreation, Kern County Museum, Kern County Department of Airports, and Kern County Historical Society. (Marker Number 923.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Air & Space. In addition, it is included in the California Historical Landmarks series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1977.
 
Location. 35° 30.007′ N, 119° 10.898′ W. Marker is in Shafter, California, in Kern County. Marker is at the intersection of Vultee Street and East Lerdo Highway on Vultee Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 180 Vultee Avenue, Shafter CA 93263, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker
Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mia Kostouros, June 28, 2014
2. Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker
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, measured as the crow flies. The Green Hotel (approx. 5.3 miles away); Shafter Depot (approx. 5.4 miles away); Shafter Cotton Research Station (approx. 5.9 miles away); Oildale Waits Drilling Company (approx. 10.4 miles away); Oildale Mural (approx. 11.2 miles away); We Shall Never Forget (approx. 11.3 miles away); Sonora Service Station (approx. 11.6 miles away); Hospital (approx. 11.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Shafter.
 
Regarding Site of Gossamer Condor Flight. In 1959, British industrialist Henry Kremer offered a prize of £50,000 to the first team that could fly a human-powered aircraft over a mile-long, figure-8 course. All competitors in this challenge came up short until Paul MacCready of AeroVironment Inc developed a lightweight, glider-like plane, piloted by a single person in an under-wing gondola. With champion cyclist and hang-glider pilot Bryan Allen of Tulare at the helm, the Gossamer Condor at last fulfilled the Kremer prize’s requirements. Two years later, AeroVironment’s similar Gossamer Albatross became the first human-powered vehicle to fly over the English Channel, again winning a Kremer prize with Allen as pilot. The Condor is now on display at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C.
 
Also see . . .  Flight of the Gossamer Condor
Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, June 2, 2010
3. Site of Gossamer Condor Flight Marker
. A YouTube video giving the history of the development and flight of the Gossamer Condor. (Submitted on January 30, 2012.) 
 
Gossamer Condor image. Click for full size.
1977
4. Gossamer Condor
This photo is on display at the nearby Minter Field Air Museum.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 18, 2019. It was originally submitted on January 30, 2012, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. This page has been viewed 1,121 times since then and 39 times this year. Last updated on March 12, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. Photos:   1. submitted on January 30, 2012, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California.   2. submitted on July 19, 2014, by Mia Kostouros of Los Banos, California.   3. submitted on January 30, 2012, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California.   4. submitted on March 11, 2019, by Craig Baker of Sylmar, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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Oct. 23, 2021