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Golden Age of Flight Timeline

1930-1931 Flight Timeline

The "Mystery Ship" set a speed record for women when it reached 196.1 miles per hour.
The "Mystery Ship" set a speed record for women when it reached 196.1 miles per hour.
Peter M. Bowers Collection

June 20, 1930 Randolph Field, the "West Point of the Air," is dedicated.

July 2­1, 1­930 Forest O'Brien and Dale Jackson set a 64­7-hour, 28-minute endurance recor­d.


July 23, 1930 Pioneer aviator Glenn Curtiss dies.

July 25, 1930 Aircraft designer Chance Vought dies.

July 29, 1930 The British dirigible R-100 flies from England to Canada in 78 hours.

August 5, 1930 Pancho Barnes sets a women's speed record of 196.1 miles per hour in a Travel Air.

August 6, 1­930 Frank Hawks sets an east-west solo record in a Travel Air "Mystery Ship": 14 hours, 50 minutes, 43 seconds.

August 13, 1930 Frank Hawks sets a west-east solo record: 12 hours, 15 minutes, 3 seconds.

September 1, 1930 Speed Holman wins the first Thompson Trophy in a Laird "Solution" at 201.9 miles per hour.

September 1-3, 1930 Dieudonné Costes and Maurice Bellonte make the first east-west crossing from Paris to New York in 37 hours, 18 minutes.

October 1930 The Polish PZL P-7 fighter appears; the Polish Air Force becomes the first in the world with an all-metal monoplane fighter squadron.

October 5, 1930 The British dirigible R-101 crashes en route from England to India.

October 13, 1930 The prototype Junkers Ju 52, one of the most famous transports in history, flies.

October 19, 1930 Gottlob Espenlaub flies a glider powered by Sander rockets.

November 1930 The Handley Page H.P.42 airliner flies for the first time.

November 9, 1930 Roy Ammel flies a Lockheed Sirius from New York to Canal Zone, 2,700 miles in 24 hours, 35 minutes.

November 24, 1930 Ruth Nichols sets a new east-west female transcontinental record of 16 hours, 59 minutes.

November 25, 1930 The Fairey Hendon, the first British metal monoplane bomber, flies.

December 2, 1930 Ruth Nichols makes a west-east transcontinental flight in 13 hours, 22 minutes.

December 22, 1930 The Tupelov TB-3, a standard Soviet four-engine bomber, flies for the first time. It is the largest airplane in the world at the time.

December 30, 1930 Robert Goddard fires a liquid-fueled rocket to 2,000 feet at 500 miles per hour.

January 4, 1931 William Swan flies over New Jersey in a glider powered by ten small rockets.

January 4-9, 1931 Bobbie Trout and Edna Cooper set a female refueling duration record of 123 hours in a Curtiss Robin.

January 6, 1931 General Italo Balboa leads 12 Savoia-Marchetti S.55 flying boats in a formation flight across the South Atlantic.

January 7, 1931 Beryl Hart and Lieutenant Bill MacClaren are lost in a transatlantic attempt.

February 26-March 1, 1931 Lucien Bossoutrot and Maurice Rossi set a new closed-circuit record of 5,481 miles in a Blériot 110.

February 28, 1931 Imperial Airways begins service from England to Central Africa.

March 3, 1931 The Fairey Gordon makes its first flight.

March 6, 1931 Ruth Nichols sets a female altitude record of 28,743 feet in a Lockheed Vega.

March 25, 1931 The first production model of the Hawker Fury flies.

March 26, 1931 Swissair is formed. The airline will push the pace of European transport lines.

March 31, 1931 Knute Rockne is killed in the crash of a Fokker transport, sealing the fate of wooden transport aircraft in America.

­April 1931 The German counterpart to the DC-3, the Junkers Ju 52/3m, makes its first flight.