Aviation in 1909
The Blériot Type XI makes its first flight.
The first aerial navigational chart is published. It is a
5-colour chart showing routes out of Paris by Cartes Guides
A Frenchman, Paul Tissandier, makes the first officially
recognised world speed record for an aeroplane in a Wright
biplane, achieving 54kph (34mph)
The Blériot Type XII becomes the first aeroplane to carry two
passengers (Santos-Dumont and Fournier) at Issy-les-Moulineaux
Zeppelin LZ3 is delivered to the German Army.
Frenchman, Louis Blériot, becomes the first man to fly across
the English Channel by aeroplane. Flying his Blériot Type XI he
takes off from Les Baraques near Calais at 0441hrs and lands at
Northfall Meadow next to Dover Castle 36½ minutes later.
Blériot wins the Daily Mail £1,000 prize.
The United States Government buys its first aeroplane, a Wright
Model A, for $30,000. This includes a bonus of $5,000 because
the aeroplane exceeds the official specification.
The first international air meeting takes place at Reims in
France. 23 aircraft and their pilots compete for cash prizes in
speed, distance and duration competitions.
Henry Farman makes the first aeroplane flight of more than 100
miles, covering 180 kilometres (111 miles) in a closed circuit
during the Reims meeting.
Eugène Lefebvre crashes his Wright Model A at Port Aviation
Juvisy and is killed, becoming the first pilot of a powered
aeroplane to die while flying.
Ferdinand von Zeppelin forms Delag (Die Deutsche Luftschiffahrt
Aktiengesellschaft), the world's first commercial airline
company. Between 1910 and 1913 the company will carry 34,000
Mademoiselle Elise Deroche, better known under her self awarded
title 'la Baronne de Laroche', makes her first solo flight. She
learnt to fly at Châlons in a Voisin biplane.
2nd Lieutenant Frederic E. Humphreys of the United States Army
becomes the first pilot officer to fly solo, at College Park in
Maryland, with a flight lasting 3 minutes in a Wright biplane.
Mrs Ralph H. van Deman becomes the first American woman
passenger in an aeroplane when she is taken aloft by Wilbur
The first flight of the Etrich Taube monoplane. This bird-like
Austrian-designed aircraft is produced in a number of versions
and many become early military aircraft in Austria and Germany.
Florence Taylor became the world's first woman glider
(sailplane) pilot when she flew her husband's home-built
aircraft at Narrabeen Beach in New South Wales, Australia.