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The Legacy of Flight

Images from the archives of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum.

Gladys Ingle


The postwar barnstorming boom resulted from a huge surplus of government airplanes, aviators, and, apparently, adrenaline. For a few hundred dollars, you could snap up the kind of airplane you learned to fly in the Air Service, then do things with it that would have gotten you court-martialed—and make good money at it too. Many wing walkers developed their own specialties; Gladys Ingle, shown here about to execute a midair transfer from one Jenny to another, liked to perform target practice with her bow and arrow while standing on the top wing.

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