Coffee With Jeff #86: Samuel Langley & the Aerodrome

29 mins - Published Sun, May 1, 2016 by Jeff Kelley

In 1891, Samuel Pierpont Langley announced that, “Mechanical Flight is possible with engines we now possess.” Unlike many attempts at flying, he didn’t just come up with an idea for a machine, build it, and see what happened, he began a series of test. His craft was developed in slow stages that began with bench tests. After years of work, he invented the unmanned, steam-driven flying machine he called the “Aerodrome”.

Theodore Roosevelt was so impressed with Langley’s experiments that, in March of 1889, he created a four-officer board to study the possibilities of Langley’s “flying machine”. President William McKinley granted Langley $50,000 from the War Department to continue his work. The trick now was to increase the size of the aerodrome to accommodate the weight of a man.

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Coffee With Jeff

A short true tale told every Sunday morning as told by Jeff! Each story is told as accurately as possible with, hopefully, a bit of humor. This is the place in which you hear things you probably never knew, or probably never wanted to know.

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