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Number Name Reg. Date    
1Truro, Cape Cod, Massachusetts06/13/1981

Ralph S. Barnaby's flight of 15 minutes, 6 seconds from Corn Hill, Truro, Cape Cod, Massachusetts on August 18, 1929, was the first flight to exceed the American record for motorless flight of 9 minutes, 45 seconds, set by Orville Wright at Kitty Hawk, N.C., October 24, 1911.

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2Rhodes Farm, Elmira, New York07/10/1982

This landmark stands on land that was part of the Rhodes Farm from which the first Soaring Society of America-sponsored National Contest was held in July of 1932, and commemorates the support of soaring by the community over the past 50 years.

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3Fulton Airport, Akron, Ohio06/29/1985

This landmark was chosen to honor the pioneering spirit and enthusiasm of the citizens of Akron, who supported the significant advances to motorless flight from 1929 to 1936. A commemorative flight on June 29th, 1985, re-enacted the first towed glider flight 50 years before, flying from Akron to Columbus carrying U.S.Mail in a Gross 4-Place glider.

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4Frankfort, Michigan05/09/1992

Frankfort, Michigan, has been a soaring mecca since the early 1930s. The city is the home of the sailplane company which manufactured the first designated military training glider. The area has also hosted two national soaring meets and numerous midwest gliding contests.

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5Torrey Pines, San Diego, California06/06/1992

This site was chosen to honor the spirit, ingenuity and enthusiasm of the pioneers who flew gliders in the 1930s at Torrey Pines. The dedication also serves to honor future pilots who will share the glider port and continue its tradition through all forms of motorless flight. 

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6Waynesboro, Virginia09/17/1993

This landmark was erected on the 60th anniversary of a record flight made by Richard Chichester duPont in a Bowlus Albatross sailplane on September 21, 1933. DuPont was launched from the Afton Mountain near here and flew 121.6 miles to Frederick, Maryland. The marker is dedicated to the people of Waynesboro and Augusta County who helped to make these flights possible." Note: The duPont glider, the Albatross, is now hanging in our museum. 

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7Point Loma, San Diego, California04/27/1996

Point Loma. This landmark is dedicated to the pioneering spirits of the pilots William Hawley Bowlus and Jack C. Barstow who made milestone flights in glider history at this site. William Hawley Bowlus, first American soaring flight to exceed one hour duration, 1 hour 21 minutes, October 19, 1929. John C. Barstow, duration flight of 15 hours 13 minutes, exceeding the world record, April 29-30, 1930.

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8Marquette Park, Miller Beach, Gary, Indiana07/27/1996

Octave Chanute arrived at Miller Beach, Gary, Indiana, on June 22, 1896, to perform gliding flight experiments in the dunes just west of this site. Over 700 successful flights provided him with significant aerodynamic data. Chanute willingly shared his data enabling the Wright brothers and other pioneers to develop powered flying machines. This marker is dedicated to Chanute and his assistants whose gliding experiments here helped make sustained flight a reality.

 

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9Nuuanu Pali Lookout, Honolulu, Hawaii12/08/1996

An international soaring record was established here on December 18, 1931. William A. Cocke, Jr. remained aloft in a glider called the Nighthawk for 21 hours 34 minutes, a new U.S. and world endurance record for motorless flight. Cocke’s Nighthawk launched from the John Galt Gliderport, located a short distance northeast of this marker. Illuminating the path for Cocke and his Nighthawk along the cliff face during the night was the U.S. Army’s 64th Coast Artillery Battery. This marker is dedicated to the people of Hawaii who helped make this flight possible, and to the thousands of glider pilots inspired by the feat.

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10Arvin-Sierra Gliderport, Tejon Ranch, Arvin, California04/29/2000

Located on the historic Tejon Ranch, the Arvin-Sierra Glider Port was the site for the West Coast Soaring Championships. Many of America’s famous glider pilots made record flights from here, soaring over the mountains and into the desert. The contests were popular events to pilots and public alike and the site became the most important glider port in California. When World War II shut down activity here, those star pilots became key to the war effort — as pilots, scientists, engineers and builders of advanced aircraft, leaving an aerospace legacy that exists today. 

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11Harris Hill, Elmira, New York07/01/2000

The Chemung Valley's pioneering soaring sites of the early 1930's faced many points of the compass. Take-off locations were selected daily to face the predicted winds. Gliders were launched by bungee cord into the wind so pilots could soar in the upward deflected air along the ridges or glide over the valley to seek thermal updrafts. These take-off sites and Caton Avenue Airport were the center of activity until Harris Hill became the "Soaring Capital" in 1934. This Landmark honors the Chemung County community and the pioneering soaring pilots who flew here. 

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12Sierra Wave Project, Bishop, California Airport06/15/2002

Fifty years ago, the eastern edge of the Sierra Nevada was the site of intense atmospheric research to explore the cause and dynamics of the newly appreciated and powerful mountain wave phenomenon known locally as the Sierra Wave. This Landmark honors the pioneering spirit of the members of the two-year Sierra Wave Project; civilian glider pilots, volunteers, Army, Air Force, Navy personnel and UCLA staff. Their stratospheric flights were conducted under the inspiration and guidance of the Southern California Soaring Association. 

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13Raspet Flight Research Laboratory, Mississippi State University, Starkville, Mississippi11/01/2003

This laboratory, established in 1948 under the guidance of Dr. August Raspet, became a world class flight research and development facility for sailplanes and powered aircraft, utilizing unconventional methods. It was here that pioneering drag reduction and suction boundary layer research was accomplished, propelling the United States to the world leadership in sailplane design in the late 1950s. Dick Johnson's RJ-5 sailplane pointed the way with its glide ratio of 40:1. Inspiring a wide range of individuals, this facility acted as a catalyst for sailplane designers and builders the world over. The science of soaring was advanced by the diverse and dedicated research efforts of scientists and students here at MSU. 

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14Mount Washington, New Hampshire10/08/2005

Meteorological conditions produced by winds and these mountains have drawn glider pilots to the skies above the Presidential Range since 1938. Much of what is known about mountain winds and turbulence was first discovered in gliders. Flights to over 30,000 feet above sea level have been made in the atmospheric waves generated by Mount Washington and the surrounding peaks. This marker is dedicated to the pioneering pilots whose spirit of exploration made these achievements possible. 

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15Marfa, Texas04/05/2008

Above the scenic mountains surrounding the Marfa Plateau, an abundance of atmospheric energy attracts gliding enthusiasts from around the world. Since 1960, sailplane pilots have utilized convective thermal updrafts, the “Marfa Dry Line” and wave lift for record setting soaring flights, four US National Soaring Contests (1967, 1969, 1991, 2006) and the first World Soaring Championships (1970) flown in the United States. In addition to formal competitions, pilots continue to gather at annual soaring camps to explore the superb weather conditions in this area. This marker is dedicated to the men and women who developed Marfa as a historic soaring site.

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16Nags Head, Outer Banks, North Carolina10/21/2011

The steady winds and gently sloping dunes of soft sand on North Carolina's Outer Banks have been attracting soaring pilots since the early 20th century. The Wright brothers flew many pioneering glider flights at Kitty Hawk between 1900 and 1903 with Orville Wright returning to set a 9 minute 45 second soaring record there in 1911. The area again achieved soaring fame when Francis Rogallo and others introduced hang gliding in the 1970s. These same coastal winds and dunes continue to bring pilots from around the world to soar Jockey's Ridge today. 

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