The Vin Fiz Crosses America
Scenes from Cal Rodgers’ first transcontinental flight in 1911.
- By Linda Shiner
- AirSpaceMag.com, September 19, 2011
Charles Wiggin Collection
The Vin Fiz was easier to carry than to roll, and word traveled fast whenever Rodgers landed, this time somewhere in Texas. Frequently souvenir seekers would pull pieces from the airplane, and hundreds of people signed their names to the fabric covering its wings. (In her book Cal Rodgers and the Vin Fiz, author Eileen Lebow writes that when Rodgers landed at his final destination, Long Beach, “In the crowd was young Edith Alsenz who managed to write her name on the right wing of the airplane near the spot where, months before, 13-year-old Charlie Brown had signed his name in an Indiana pasture. In time, the two met and married, linked by, among other things, their touch with the historic flying machine.”