On this date: The first-ever air delivery brought silk from Dayton to Columbus 112 years ago

On Nov. 7, 1910, a freight airplane made a record breaking flight, delivering goods from Dayton to Columbus. The flight covered 62 miles in one hour and eleven minutes.

The story was covered in that day’s Dayton Herald newspaper. Here is a glimpse of the reporting about the event:


Aviator Phil Parmalee landed (in Columbus) at 11:50 today, after a continuous 62-mile cross-country flight from Dayton, in a Wright biplane, carrying a consignment of silk from a Dayton firm to the Morehouse-Martens Company. He maintained an altitude of 1,000 feet during the flight.

Roy Knabenshue, manager of the Wright fliers, stated today that Parmalee had broken the world’s cross-country speed record in his flight from Dayton. He figures Parmalee made an average of 69 miles per hour, as he went out of his way in getting here. Parmalee says he flew about 65 miles altogether

The world’s first freight aeroplane left Huffman Prairie at 10:39 Monday morning carrying five bolts of silk, weighing 47 pounds, consigned to the Morehouse-Martens Company, retail dry goods merchants, Columbus.


The flight’s beginning was a magnificent one. The biplane left the ground at 10:37 and Parmales made a semi-circular flight of the field, crossing the eastern fence at exactly 10:39.

Orville Wright and sister, Katherine, went out to the field on the 9 o’clock. The same car brought the five bolts of silk to be transported. The silk, valued at about $800, had been sent from New York to Dayton.

About 500 persons witnessed the departure of the airplane.


P. M. Jacobs, a mechanic of the Wright Company, carrying some tools, accompanying three Columbus newspapermen and a photographer, in an automobile, followed the aeroplane down the road from the aviation field to Yellow Springs Road, and thence on to Columbus.


Scores of letters have been pouring in to the Morehouse-Martens Company ever since the Dayton to Columbus aeroplane flight was contracted for by that enterprising house.

Women by the dozen have written asking for the privilege of riding in the aeroplane, and there are plenty or men as well, who have ambitions in the flying line.

The chamber of commerce of Columbus has recognized what a good thing this “Aviation Day” is for Columbus.

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