“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Afton in Nelson County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Flight of Richard C. duPont

Flight of Richard C. duPont Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, August 2, 2009
1. Flight of Richard C. duPont Marker
Inscription.  Near this site on September 21, 1933, Richard C. duPont was launched from Afton Mountain in his Bowlus sailplane, Albatross. Four hours and fifty minutes later he landed at Frederick, Maryland, establishing a United States distance record for sail planing at 121.6 miles, almost double the previous U.S. record of 66 miles.
Erected 1983 by Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission. (Marker Number W-219.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Air & Space. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Department of Historic Resources series list. A significant historical month for this entry is September 1865.
Location. 38° 1.994′ N, 78° 51.122′ W. Marker is near Afton, Virginia, in Nelson County. Marker is on Interstate 64 at milepost 100, on the right when traveling east. It is at the first scenic overlook east of the Skyline Drive exit (Exit 99). Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Afton VA 22920, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Rockfish Gap Meeting (here, next to this marker); Greenwood-Afton Rural Historic District (here,
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next to this marker); Crozet Blue Ridge Tunnel (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Laborers (approx. ¼ mile away); The Blue Ridge Railroad (approx. ¼ mile away); Nelson County / Augusta County (approx. 0.3 miles away); Claudius Crozet (approx. 0.3 miles away); Park-to-Park Beauty (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Afton.
More about this marker. Marker can only be accessed from the eastbound lanes of I–64.
Also see . . .
1. Richard Chichester du Pont. Wikipedia entry. “In 1933, Richard du Pont partnered with Hawley Bowlus to set up the Bowlus-du Pont Sailplane Company, a glider manufactory in San Fernando, California. Du Pont made a record flight in one of their sailplanes on September 21, 1933, taking off from Afton Mountain into the Rockfish Gap and gliding 121.6 miles to Frederick, Maryland. The firm remained in business for only a few years, ceasing operations in September 1936.” (Submitted on August 19, 2009.) 

2. The Richard C. du Pont Memorial Trophy. “The trophy, symbolic of thermal
Two Markers at the Scenic Overlook image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, August 2, 2009
2. Two Markers at the Scenic Overlook
The Blue Ridge Mountains are in the distance. Afton Mountain is out of frame to the right.
soaring flight, is a bronze casting mounted on a mahogany base and is 24 ¼ inches high overall. It was presented to SSA in 1947 by Mrs. Allaire du Pont in memory of her husband, Richard C. du Pont U.S. National Soaring Champion in 1934, 1935 and l937 who died in the crash of an experimental military glider September 12, 1943.” (Submitted on August 19, 2009.) 
Scenic View image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, August 2, 2009
3. Scenic View
Perhaps this view is similar to what Charles duPont saw from his sailplane on his way to Maryland.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 22, 2022. It was originally submitted on August 19, 2009, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 2,002 times since then and 314 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on August 19, 2009, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.

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Dec. 9, 2023