Hammondsport in Steuben County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
1908 An Astonishing Sight
The Glenn H. Curtiss Heritage Trail
With Curtiss at the controls, the June Bug rose into the air, leveled off at a height of about 40 feet, and flew east toward Keuka Lake for almost a mile. He passed directly overhead and landed near the farthest edge of the tree line that is just visible in the distance. It was the first publicly announced and witnessed flight of a powered aircraft in the United States, conducted in front of an audience of prominent newspaper reporters and a crowd of nearly 1000 spectators. The flight won Curtiss the Scientific American Trophy.
The June Bug flight was the crowning achievement of Curtiss's work with his associates from the Aerial Experimentation Association, (AEA) including famed inventor Alexander Graham Bell. During the spring and summer of 1908, they used this area - then known as Stony Brook Farm -- for short test flights of the new aircraft designs the AEA was developing, making their takeoffs from the farms nearby oval horse racing track.
Beginning as a self-taught bicycle mechanic, Glenn Curtiss went on to achieve national prominence as a pioneer aviator, the founder of the American aircraft industry, and the father of U.S. Naval Aviation. The Curtiss Heritage Trail celebrates the pioneering accomplishments of Hammondsport's most famous native son.
Erected 2011 by the Glenn H. Curtiss Museum.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Air & Space • Industry & Commerce. A significant historical month for this entry is July 1795.
Location. 42° 23.939′ N, 77° 15.079′ W. Marker is in Hammondsport, New York, in Steuben County. Marker can be reached from Pleasant Valley Road. The marker is at the far edge of the parking area opposite the Great Western Winery (also known as the Pleasant Valley Wine Company) Visitor Center Entrance. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Hammondsport NY 14840, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Glenn Curtiss (approx. 0.2 miles away); 1878-1930 Larger Than Life (approx. half a mile away); Glenn Hammond Curtiss (approx. 0.6 miles away); Pleasant Valley War Memorial (approx. 0.7 miles away); Pleasant Valley (approx. 0.7 miles away); Cradle of Aviation (approx. one Glenn H. Curtiss (approx. one mile away); Into the World of Aviation (approx. 1.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hammondsport.
More about this marker. The Glenn H. Curtiss Heritage Trail, which marks historic sites in and around Hammondsport, was completed in 2011. According to a news release from the Glenn H. Curtiss Museum, which sponsored the two-year project, the trail features informational plaques at sites of historical significance, all relating to the accomplishments of Curtiss, the Hammondsport native and aviation pioneer.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. To better understand the relationship, study each marker in the order shown.
Also see . . .
1. Scientific American: July 1908: The Winning Flight of the "June Bug" Aeroplane for The Scientific Am. (Submitted on November 10, 2013, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York.)
2. The Pleasant Valley Wine Company History. (Submitted on November 10, 2013, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York.)
3. The Glenn H. Curtiss Museum, Hammondsport, New York. (Submitted on November 10, 2013, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York.)
Additional keywords. flying machine
Credits. This page was last revised on August 3, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 10, 2013, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York. This page has been viewed 405 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 10, 2013, by Howard C. Ohlhous of Duanesburg, New York. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.