Photo Essay:The Blakesburg Fly-In
Antique airplanes—the cream of the crop—fluttered around corn country to celebrate an air mail birthday.
- By airspacemag.com
- AirSpaceMag.com, November 18, 2008
Tail number 1077
Greg Herrick’s Tri-motor is the oldest airworthy Ford in the world. Charles Lindbergh gave Anne Morrow her first airplane ride in it in 1927; he also flew this aircraft on an inaugural Foreign Air Mail flight from Mexico City to Brownsville, Texas, in 1929 and back. That same year, Amelia Earhart flew it to the Buffalo Aviation Show from Rochester, New York. Herrick bought the carcass from Alaskan Gene Frank, who, like Ohio’s Walter Soplata, has saved many an aircraft from the cutter’s torch. Maurice Hovius of Hove Air in Vicksburg, Michigan, restored it to mint condition (and is presently restoring another Tri-motor for Herrick). Herrick keeps the Tri-motor in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Ford flew mail from Blakesburg to Ottumwa to Iowa City and back on August 29.