Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Enflight adds executive leadership to advance next generation intelligent flight PLANNING iPad applications

A Press release from
Stow, MA (November 29, 2011) - Enflight, a leading innovator of intelligent
flight planning applications, today announced the appointment of Chairman,
Dr. Robert Glorioso and Vice President of Marketing, John Gitelman to its
executive team. Their addition to the executive team coincides with efforts
to advance the next generation of intelligent flight applications for the
iPad(r) to make flying even easier for pilots.

Dr. Glorioso brings his considerable experience as an executive, consultant,
investor, board member, entrepreneur, inventor, author and pilot to
Enflight. He is the founder and principal of QC Avionix, a creator of
cockpit accessories for pilots. Earlier in his career he was Vice President
and Director of the Pacific Rim Board for Digital Equipment Corporation. He
founded and served as CEO, President, and Chairman of Marathon Technologies,
a software company delivering high availability, fault and disaster tolerant
computer systems. He was chairman of Turbine, a massive multiplayer games
company and served on the boards of Proteon, Netrix, and Ultranet
Communications in the public network and ISP fields.

Mr. Gitelman is a strategy, branding, marketing and product management
specialist with extensive experience running global businesses at Bose,
Polaroid and other brand leaders as well as an entrepreneur with innovative
customer-focused products and applications in the Apple ecosystem.

Phillip Apley, CEO of Enflight and one of its founders, says, "Enflight has
always been on the forefront of intelligent aviation information solutions
with Personal Minimums Analysis and at-a-glance weather infographics. By
bringing Bob and John aboard we are committing to significantly raise the
bar to provide pilots with even more innovative, comprehensive and
easy-to-use solutions."

About Enflight
Enflight offers pilots an exclusive suite of flight plan workflow products
and tools that enable pilots to plan flights faster, more easily, and more
safely. The software offers industry-leading web-based and iPad(r)
applications that provide flight planning and FAA legal briefings featuring
sophisticated Personal Minimums Analysis and patented at-a-glance
TAFSpiral(tm) weather infographics. As the original authors of the DUATS
(CSC) briefing service, Enflight has the most established and tested code
base in the business and wrote the original AOPA flight planning system. For
more information, please visit

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Powder Puff Derby Virtual Museum: Paper Awards

For the 1967 Powder Puff Derby, which ran from July 2-10, 1967, Mary Rose Myers received a "citation of appreciation" from the City of Atlantic City and Garden State Chapter of the 99's "with our sincere thanks for your valued contribution to the success of the Pre-Start program of the 21st Annual All Woman Transcontinental Air Race.

Signed by Judy Meltsner, Chairman of the 1967 AWTAR Start Committee, and Commander William T. Somers, Chairman of the Atlantic City Host Committee.

In 1973, she received an Award of Merit from the Board of Directors of the Powder Puff Derby, "in recognition of successful participation in the 27th Annual All-Woman Transcontinental Air Race, a 2543 mile course originating in Carlsbad, C alifornia and terminating at Elmira, New York during the period of July 13-16, 1973.

Signed by Joan L. Hruhec (sp?) and Kay Brick (Chairman of the Board of the AWTAR.)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Blogs of Women pilots

I'll share a few of these every now and again: Toria Flies: Thoughts of a red-headed Aviatrix
I'm slowly but surely learning my way about the world and becoming the woman I'm destined to be. I'm eclectic, I'm passionate, I'm a giver. I'm an always dreamin', airplane flyin', avid crocheter. I'm a girl who loves to be on a "mission" whether it's organizing a fundraiser or seeing how many turtles I can catch in the lake in a day. I don't like raisins, but love raisinets and yogurt covered raisins. I don't like purple grapes, but love the green ones. I hate blueberries except if they are in muffins. That about sums up the way my brain works.

I'm an instrument rated commercial pilot and work as a sales assistant for Aviation Insurance Resources. I am a co-host of the aviation podcast, the StuckMic AvCast. I am an active member of the Sugarloaf chapter of the Ninety-Nines, a VIP member of Women of Aviation Week and a member of Women in Aviation International and the Airplane Owners and Pilots Association. I also organize the Women Fly it Forward event in Frederick, MD. Aviation wit and wisdom
(Danielle Gibeault is a CFI, CFII, and MEI for those in the know. To the rest of us, that translates to Certificated Flight Instructor, Instrument Instructor, and Multi Engine Instructor. I also hold a Ground Instructor Certificate, Advanced and Instrument. That’s right, the FAA trusts me to spend my days getting into airplanes with people who don’t know how to fly them! I’ve been a pilot for 13 years and a flight instructor for more than 5. I started my aviation career on my 18th birthday driving fuel trucks, parking airplanes, and doing all the rest of that glamorous grunt work that keeps the airplanes flying. Haven’t looked back since.)

The blog below hasn't been updated in a year, as she completed her goal, but the archives are there and make for interesting and fun reading. Flying Wisconsin
Who is this person who loves “flying Wisconsin?” I’m a general aviation and airport advocate who appreciates the beauty of my home state. My first flight lesson was at Alexander Field-South Wood County Airport (ISW) in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, on my 30th birthday, a few years ago. I haven’t lost the passion yet - it helps that my husband, John, a 9000-hour pilot, loves it as much as I do! Me, I was out of currency for a while, concentrating on life’s other responsibilities since getting my private pilot certificate in 1992 and instrument rating 10-years later. But at this time in my life I’m closing in on 500 hours and flying more than ever. I’m lovin’ it!

This blog begins with the adventurous goal my husband and I are accomplishing in the summer of 2010: Flying to all 60 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties that have a public-use airport – in four flights. Several people have suggested that we share this story online, so here it is! Once we reach that goal, I’ll add new pages, sprinkling in some aviation memories, goals, and current projects I’m working on.

I’m a mom to two adult children and they, along with my husband, are the wind beneath my wings. My daughter, Sister Maria Caeli, is a Dominican Sister and middle school teacher, and my son, Luke, is a student at UW-Stout and one of the best motorcycle hillclimbers and off-road action sports videographers in the Midwest. Check out his work at and (Yeah, I’m proud of their accomplishments.)

As the owner of SkyWord Communications, LLC, I offer writing, marketing, and consulting services to aviation businesses, airports, and organizations. As president of the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame and editor of its quarterly magazine, Forward in Flight, I lead an effort to collect, preserve, and share Wisconsin aviation history, and honor those who made it. I’ve worked as an editor at EAA and have written dozens of aviation articles for various online and print publications, and even won a few awards for it.

Powder Puff Derby Virtual Museum: Patch and Charm

A charm from the 1975 race. Across the front is the route of the race across the United States, on the back is the year the race took place.

From the estate of Mary Rose Myers, who participated in 3 Powder Puff Derbies, including the 30th one in 1977 that signaled the end of the race.

A sew on patch from the last race in 1977.

Robert Henderson, Warbird Sculptor

Robert Henderson, dubbed the "Warbird Sculptor" by an entire generation of World War II veterans, has chosen to chronicle the history of aviation in monumental bronze sculptures.

To date, he has fathered "The Study Hall", a most unique outdoor sculpture garden at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado. This garden houses extraordinary bronze warbird memorials - 4 World War II fighters, 3 World War II bombers and 1 World War II cargo plane.

These warbirds tell the modern day history of the Air Force to those who study at this prestigious school, as well as millions of visitors each year.

Mr. Henderson is also working on a Woman Aviators Sculpture Park, and I interviewed him (via his wife, Cheryl) about the project.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

WASP recognized with memorial at BOHS

Orange County Register: Women pilots recognized with memorial at BOHS
Quintin Ruiz, grandson of WASP Violet Cowden, escorts Mary Lamy and Myrle Mackintosh.

A plaque and monument have been unveiled among 12 pepper trees at the edge of the Brea Olinda High School campus to pay tribute to 12 Women Airforce Service Pilots, better known as WASPs, from Orange County.

The memorial was paid for through donations and fundraisers held by the Orange District of the California Federation of Women's Clubs.

During World War II, the women pilots flew non-combat missions, making more male pilots available for combat flights. The WASPs flew most types of military aircraft including B-26 and B-29 bombers. These women weren't granted military status until 1977.

"They've been overlooked," said Ellie Rankin, member of the Placentia Round Table Women's Club.

Mary Lamy, of Seal Beach, who is one of the 12 Orange County WASPs, was present in her uniform at the dedication Nov. 10.

Along with Lamy, the women honored are Beverly L. Beesemyer, Mary Reineberg Burchard, Violet Thurn Cowden, Jeanne Perot D'Ambly, Mary Ann Dreher, Roberta Jane Fohl, Bethel Gibbons Haven, Dolores M. Lamb, Joan Whelan Lyle, Doris K. Muise and Eleanor Olson Weems.

Marilyn Bennett, president of the Orange District, initiated the idea of getting involved with recognizing the WASP legacy.

Bennett, along with district chairman Myrle Mackintosh, led the women's clubs in this effort for more than a year, Rankin said. Previously, the 12 pepper trees were planted in part of the BOHS campus that was damaged by the 2008 Freeway Complex Fire.

Women from the 23 women's clubs in the Orange District were present for the event

Powder Puff 25th Jubilee Charm: "You've Come A Long Way, Baby"

This is a charm about 1 and a half inches long, featuring a female pilot, with a cigarette in a cigarette holder, leaning on a propeller.

It's thick, stamped metal, with the raised surfaces painted. The base surface is now a dark color - not sure if it was that way originally or not.

On the back is stamped:

25th Jubilee: July 5-8, 1971
"You've come a long way, baby"

This is the catchphrase of Virginia Slims, who helped sponsor the race.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Let's Make the Jerrie Mock Statue a Reality

I was reminded of the funding drive to create a statue of Jerrie Mock - the first woman to fly solo around the world - today.

Fundraising has been going on for a couple of months - the goal is $45,000.

I took the liberty of creating a web page, which will direct folks to the appropriate address to donate funds.

However, everyone reading this knows who Jerrie Mock is, I'm sure, so you can bypass the page and, if you are so inclined, donate to:

Licking County Foundation
PO Box 4212
Newark, OH 43058-4212
Licking County apparently oversees funds for hundreds of projects, so your check needs to be made out to them, but put in the memo line: put into Jerrie Mock Sculpture Fund.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

PR: BERINGER Announces New 29oz Tailwheel

Tallard, France: Beringer Wheels & Brakes has announced a new, extremely
lightweight tailwheel assembly for the Pipistrel Sinus, with applications
for other aircraft.

The two-piece anodized aluminum wheel with sealed ball bearings and its 6-ply 200x50 tire and tube, assembled, weighs just 830 grams (29 ounces). It rides on the 8mm diameter Sinus axle; no aircraft modifications are required.

"We designed and built a particularly light but strong tailwheel to complement the BERINGER mains used throughout the Pipistrel line," said Rémi Beringer, chief designer. "This wheel and tire have a design load of 150kg [330 lb], which makes this assembly ideal for the Sinus."

Other applications, including some in both OEM and homebuilt markets, will also benefit from this design's strength/weight ratio; the new BERINGER tailwheel may soon be seen on amateur-built aircraft, as well as in several additional OEM applications.

The tire is delivered already mounted and pressure-tested. It is ready for immediate delivery for use as a retrofit improvement, or for new installations. The factory invites OEM inquiries. Retail price, FOB Tallard, is $249 US.

Headquarters and Engineering:
BERINGER Wheels & Brakes
Champ Eymi
F-05130 Tallard, France
tel +33 492 201 619
fax +33 492 526 966

USA Service Center, Parts & Support:
Lockwood Aviation
1 Lockwood Way
Sebring, FL 33870
phone: 800-527-6829
fax: (863) 655-6225 Parts:

Aircraft Spruce WEST
225 Airport Circle
Corona, CA 92880
toll free: 800-824-1930
phone: 951-372-9555
fax: 951-372-0555

Powder Puff Derby Cachet, 1947-1966

I'm putting together a virtual museum for Powder Puff Derby material.

Here's a cachet from 1966, sold to raise funds for the Powder Puff Derby.

Here's what the card says:
The Powder Puff Derby this year marks a significant achievement-the only aviation event to function for 20 consecutive years...a race run by women for women. We are proud of its success and its contribution to general aviation.

During this 20 year period, with our first race numbering all of 2 entries, we have totaled 1009 entries, 3,382,746 race miles, and 73 cities in these United States have served as official stops, some as many as 8 times.

This year we anticipate another exciting race from the Evergreen State of Washington to the Sunshine State of Florida. In purchasing this cachet, you have supported the POWDER PUFF DERBY.

What's a cachet?
In philately, a cachet is a printed or stamped design or inscription, other than a cancellation or pre-printed postage, on an envelope, postcard, or postal card to commemorate a postal or philatelic event. There are official and private (independent of postal authorities) cachets. They commemorate everything from the first flight on a particular route, to the Super Bowl. Cachets are also frequently made, either by private companies or a government, for first day of issue stamp events or "second-day" stamp events. They are often present on event covers.

The first cacheted FDC (first day cover) was produced by prominent philatelist and cachet maker George Ward Linn in 1923, for the Harding Memorial stamp issue.

Cachet-making is considered an art form, and cachets may be produced by using any number of methods, including drawing or painting directly onto the envelope, serigraphy, block printing, lithography, engraving, laser printing, attachment of photographs or other paper memorabilia, etc. Frequently flight cachets (which have also been used in space and on the moon) are rubber-stamped.

The largest and best-known cachet-making companies, which typically produce thousands or tens of thousands of printed cachets for U.S. stamp issues, are Artcraft, Artmaster, Fleetwood, House of Farnam, and Colorano.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Five questions with a Snowbird

From The Five questions with a Snowbird

Lieutenant Colonel Maryse Carmichael is a history maker.

She’s the first woman to be appointed commanding officer of the Snowbirds, the Royal Canadian Air Force’s aerobatic team. The 40-year-old native of Quebec City was given the command in May 2010.

Making history is old hat for Carmichael — the mother of daughters aged 2 and 5 was selected in 2000 to join the Snowbirds, becoming the first female pilot to ever fly with the team. She signed up with the Canadian Forces in 1990 and has flown VIPs around the world — including the prime minister — on CC-130 Hercules transport planes out of Trenton. She is based in Moose Jaw, Sask.

The Snowbirds flew in 54 air shows over the summer and might make an appearance at the 2012 Hamilton air show. An announcement is expected in December.

Carmichael was in Hamilton Friday for an event at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum. It was billed as A Dessert Date with Madame Snowbird.

The Spectator sat down with the Lt.-Colonel and asked her five questions.

1 Why did you want to become a pilot?
“I started with the Air Cadets when I was a teenager, actually. One of my older brothers is also a pilot, so I kind of followed in his footsteps. First, when I was 16 doing my glider’s scholarship and then my permanent pilot licence at 17. I really loved it. It was a bit of a passion, so I decided to join the Canadian Forces because ultimately what I wanted to do was fly jets and that’s not something you can really do on civilian streets, or you can, but it’s not as accessible as with the Canadian forces.”

2 How did you become commander of the Snowbirds?
“This is actually a change for the squadron ... the person that you would see flying and leading the formation in the air was also the commander on the ground. In January 2010, the leadership of the Canadian Forces decided to change that because what you see actually on the road travelling, the show team, is actually just a small part of the entire squadron. We have more than 80 people within the squadron. So it became really hard for the commanding officer to be on the road all the time and then to manage all our personnel back at home. So, they created a new position of commanding officer (of the team) and that is where I came in.”

3 How do you feel about becoming the first female commander?
“There are slowly more and more female pilots and I think the statistics are the same whether we are talking about military pilots or civilian pilots, the numbers are very similar ... Perhaps at my level it is still a new thing to have a female, a woman, as a commanding officer, but for me it’s been my entire career working with them. I don’t see anything different.

4 What is the value of the Snowbirds to Canadians?
“Our mission is to demonstrate to the Canadian public the skills, the professionalism and the teamwork of all the men and women of the Canadian Forces ... It’s sometimes hard to quantify what we do. How can you say that we motivate young people to have dreams? I am one of those who saw the Snowbirds when I was a kid and thought that was something I wanted to do. How many people do we recruit? Again, it’s hard to quantify, but we are certainly there for Canada’s pride. We saw it with the Olympics a few years ago how Canada was behind its athletes. That’s also what we do with the Canadian Forces.”

5 How do you do your job with two young kids at home?
“It’s a work-life balance, of course. But you know what? Both my husband (fighter pilot Major Scott Greenough) and I do what we love ... Sometimes there is creative scheduling. For example, I am going back tomorrow (Saturday), we have a big party at home and then he is leaving Sunday for a couple of days ... We are very fortunate the military is helping us in being co-located. Sometimes it does not work out for some of the families ... with the ranks we have, we have a little bit of say in our schedules. Sometimes at the end of the month we both have to be away at the same time. I call my mom and she flies in from Quebec.”

Heather E. Schwartz Inspires Young Girls to Serve Their Nation

From Heather E. Schwartz Inspires Young Girls to Serve Their Nation

Earlier this year, GeekMom Kathy recommended I contact one of her colleagues, children’s author Heather E. Schwartz, about reviewing her two books about women in the U.S. armed forces that were published earlier this year. She thought I’d be an appropriate candidate, not only as a military member myself, but because I have elementary-school aged children of the appropriate age-level for the books — even if they aren’t girls.

Ms. Schwartz graciously sent me her two books and my sons read them this summer with enthusiasm. They especially enjoyed Women of the U.S. Air Force: Aiming High, since they live in an Air Force family in an Air Force community. They were less interested in the Marine Corps version, Women of the U.S. Marine Corps: Breaking Barriers. That’s certainly no fault of the author. My oldest son read it anyway to help with his Accelerated Reader goals for his 3rd grade class.

These are perfect non-fiction books for elementary-aged children who are on the cusp between picture books and chapter books. Both books are similarly laid out. Aiming High and Breaking Barriers both have 32 pages in 4 chapters, plus a glossary, timeline, internet sites and an index.

The first chapters feature recent notable military women, who have worked hard and both had opportunities to to be the first women to perform high-visibility roles. In Aiming High, Ms. Schwartz interviewed Major Nicole Malachowski, the Air Force’s first female pilot for The Thunderbirds, the service’s aerial demonstration team. In Breaking Barriers, chapter one featured Major Jennifer Greives, the first-ever Marine One VH-3D pilot. I enjoyed these particular choices of role models for the books because in both cases, these are women who could excel and break gender barriers in a more reasonable point in their careers, rather than as General officers. Kudos to Ms. Schwartz to giving girls a more of a goal than “I want to be a General in the armed forces.” I know that sounds rather odd, that we should always tell our girls to be whatever they can be, but I think to be a pilot is a very attainable goal with very clear intermediate objectives.

The second chapters feature histories of women in their respective services. The histories are brief and are written to a 4th-5th grade level, which means that although much detail is omitted, there’s no doubt that a child will learn a lot here, thanks to the age-appropriate word choices. Definitions of several military jargon words, such as “deployment”, are defined as breakout-boxes on the same pages. Ms. Schwartz did a great job pulling historical images; I especially like the “Lady Leatherneck” cartoon about Lucy Brewer she found for Breaking Barriers on page 11.

The third chapter discusses the current process by which a young woman can join the service, attend training, and learn a skill from pilot training to engineering to even serving in the astronaut corps!

Finally, the fourth chapters cover the future of women serving and provides gems of inspiration for how girls can themselves serve in the armed forces. It provides some statistics about women serving, some insights into women in combat, and some other inspirational role models in the Air Force . Great inspiration for no matter what she wants to be when she grows up — it’s just as applicable to the armed forces. At the end of Chapter 4 in both books are a “Fast Facts” section and a timeline.

In summary, if you see a future Zoomie or Jarhead in your daughter or other young lady in your life, these books would make great gifts!

P.S.: It’s a coincidence that the day I wrote this review, the U.S. Air Force press service published this article about an all-female cargo aircraft crew flying in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. This now happens more often than one might think, and to the girls on board, they barely even notice they’re all-women. To them they’re all Airmen!

Patricia Vollmer is a geeky meteorologist mother of two emerging geek sons, ages 6 & 9. She spent 10 years on active duty in the U.S. Air Force before becoming an AF Reservist in 2005. Hobbies include crocheting, running, cooking, and exploring the world with her boys. Ask her why the sky is blue at your own risk. She blogs about her Air Force family life at Ground Control to Major Mom. The opinions expressed here are not necessarily those of the United States Air Force.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Honor the Veterans, including the women

From the Picayune Item: Honor the Veterans, including the women
By Dr. Stanley Watson/Syndicated Columnist
The Picayune Item
PICAYUNE — The Times-Picayune ran a story once titled "Service Women Get Own Monument." The monument is located at the entrance of Arlington Cemetery and the dedication was attended by a great number of service women and veterans of wars, some going back to WW I. Frieda Hardin summarized the change in a woman's status in these words: "When I served in the Navy women were not even allowed to vote. Now women occupy important offices. In my 101 years of living, I have observed many wonderful achievements but none as meaningful as ... women ... taking their rightful place in society."

The second story informed us that the Marine's first female striker pilot is from Meridian Mississippi. These two events took me back in memory to a high school girl at Randlett, Okla. In those days, classes were small and everyone knew everyone else on a kissing cousin basis.

Jewel Pfeifer was a classmate. She was petite, with curly black hair, intelligent blue eyes, and a ready smile. I remember her as one who could draw pictures of her classmates and teachers that were remarkably real and her caricatures were downright funny.

Many years later, during WW II, I heard that she had joined the U.S. Air force. The army had just established the Women's Air force Service Pilots (WASP's) which was set up to make use of women pilots. They ferried planes and participated in turning raw male recruits into skilled pilots. In spite of the fact that their record was exceptional, the program was canceled before the war ended, probably because it was specifically for women.

Jewel had joined and completed her training in the last WASP class and never got to serve. She was deeply disappointed but refused to let the dream die. In compensation for her loss and, as a memorial to the considerable contribution of women in the military, Jewel sculptured three bronze statutes:

The first statue was placed in the Frontiers of Flight Museum in Dallas, Texas and was dedicated by astronaut Neil Armstrong.

The second is located in Sweetwater where the WASP's training center was located in the 1940's.

The third statue is a life-size figure of a young woman in military uniform stepping forward and looking upward with a parachute on her back. It stands in the library of the Texas Women's University, Denton, Texas.

Jewel and I dated during our junior year, going to the movies or school events but not to dances. I had no problem with dancing but Jewel explained that her Methodist church was beginning to frown upon it. Not to worry, the young people, always respectful, simply changed the name of our dances to "swinging games" and continued our wayward ways.

Fifty years later Jewel contacted me to speak at the high school reunion. Johnie was not up to the trip but was quite tolerant when I confessed that I had hugged the "girls" at the reunion. (I shook hands with the "boys".) Jewel was a talented writer and the four file folders of letters she wrote to me over the next few years would be worth publishing. She sent copies of her award winning poetry, pictures of our class members and herself and long interesting letters that always included a funny joke or one of her remarkable poems.

In one of her letters Jewel described a reunion of five of the WASP women pilots she had in her home in Dallas. "Yes, we had a glorious jubilee! Three solid days and evenings of laughter! Can't ever remember of having such a time. Everyone was so glad to see everyone else and our informal home atmosphere and reminiscences, stories and getting caught up on one another was so perfect. We laughed (and wept a bit) and hugged and just sat like idiots looking into eyes that looked back at us with more love than any poet could describe. What a blessing — all those old women pilots who lived through three wars and a lifetime of joy and horrors and still come back smelling like roses. God has been good to us all and survival being foremost, has helped us with a sense of gratitude and a sense of humor.”

Dr. Banks used to say, “Everybody says ‘I don't want to live to be a hundred' and that's what they think until they're 99!'"

I have a suggestion for remembering the veterans on this Veteran's Day: If you have a copy of The Greatest Generation, published by the Picayune Item, pull it out and look at the pictures and stories of the young people from this area who served in the military in time of war. (I understand copies are still available down at the paper office.) Also recall the special days at church when the veteran's were asked to stand or come down front and be recognized.

While the advance of women has been rapid and dramatic in the military, nothing can compare to the traditional role of wife and mother. This is because the family is the very foundation of our nation — the source of our greatness. For example, Jewel married Tom Estes decades ago and filled the traditional role of wife and mother as admirably as she used her artistic genius to commemorate military women in bronze.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Challenges Of Being A Female Pilot In The Nigerian Aviation Industry

From The Challenges Of Being A Female Pilot In The Nigerian Aviation Industry
Nigeria’s Aviation industry is still a male dominated world. Though over the past few decades, the female presence in the airline industry has been on the increase, by comparison, women still have a paltry presence. According to data compiled by Women in Aviation international ( women represent 6% of the pilot population.

In Nigeria this is no exception.

Aero Contractors ( prides itself in its contribution to the development of aviation expertise inNigeria as a whole, but in particular in the support of female involvement. Aero has 101 pilots (as at October 29 2011) in total and 13 of them are female. This is a percentage of just under 13, which is more than double the industry average.

In 2009, Aero, a Nigerian airline, became the first airline inAfricato operate a flight with an all female cockpit and cabin crew.

What are the challenges that cause barriers to entry into aviation (particularly the cockpit) for women inNigeria? This is an Aeros female pilot’s account.

Several factors determine what kind of challenges a female pilot would have. One of the main ones would be what part of the world she is flying, mindset of the populace or tradition. In the developed world, a female captain probably wouldn’t attract too much attention if passengers sighted her while boarding an aircraft. But in Africa, orNigeriaspecifically where I fly, she would definitely get a second look, and yes, believe it or not a consideration of returning to the departure hall and getting on a different flight ostensibly owing to the lack of confidence of having a woman in command.

Don’t get me wrong, over the years; I believe it has become more acceptable to see women on the flight deck. A few ‘more traditional thinking’ men may still have reservations about being at the mercy of a ‘mere’ woman while being flown in this very sophisticated equipment over several hundreds of miles. Some folks console themselves by believing she is just a ‘co-pilot’ and doesn’t really fly the plane. (She couldn’t possibly have an idea how to, not with all those buttons and switches).

Well, in all fairness, I have received several encouraging and pleasant remarks from Nigerian passengers, mostly women though!

Another factor that would probably cause any challenges to a female pilot in the Nigerian airline industry has to do with physiological issues which affect every female, regardless of geographical location. If you’re single, unlike men, there’s always the ‘biological clock’ factor and the conflict between your career and settling down. The social pressure is massive. In our society, the woman is reminded that it is hard enough locating your ‘soul mate’ let alone worrying if he’ll be supportive of your profession. If you’re married, sooner or later, you get pregnant and you can’t fly for too long after that sometimes for about a whole year. I mean, there’s nothing as joyful as having a baby! But it does slow down your career quite significantly.

Personally speaking, I wouldn’t say the challenges outweigh the pros of me being female pilot. I’m married to a pilot and this works perfectly for me. They say pilots talk about flying a lot. It’s true, it never gets boring, no two days are really the same and usually I can’t wait to get home and tell him about some weird escapade and vice versa ( be at peace, pilots don’t take passengers up and hunt escapades). I also have a 3 year old and another on the way, which means I’ll have to stop flying soon.

Every job has its challenges to women as well as to men I guess, but trust me, there’s very few jobs I’d swap mine for.

Violet Enahoro, is a female pilot with Aero Contractors company of Nigeria Limited (

Memorial honors female pilot

This bronze sculpture of Doris Tracy is one of two in a memorial for the WASP that will be unveiled Nov. 11 in LaVeta.

From the Chieftain (La Veta, CO): Memorial honors female pilot
LA VETA — A memorial honoring woman pilot Doris Bristol Tracy will be unveiled at 3 p.m. Nov. 11 in the courtyard between the public library and Francisco Fort Museum.

Tracy, a longtime La Veta resident who died July 29, 2010, served as a WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilot) from 1943 to 1945. She and other WASPs were awarded the Congressional Gold Medal for their service to the United States in March 2010.

The memorial comprises two larger-than-life bronze sculptures — one of Tracy as a pilot in flight gear and one of a girl holding an airplane — by La Veta artist Joan Hanley.

After getting to know Tracy and hearing about her adventures as a WASP, Hanley thought Tracy would be an inspiration to young women and to the community, and she launched the Doris Tracy Memorial Project.

The project has involved many people, including young women from the Sangre de Cristo Center for Youth in Walsenburg who have learned about sculpture and how large bronzes are created, and about aviation and the WASP program.

Hanley said involving the young women was "a really good fit."

"She (Tracy) was a role model. You have to do something with your life, have to have some passion, and hers was flying."

Hanley is a painter, sculptor and illustrator whose work has been exhibited at the Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center in Pueblo, the Denver Art Museum and the Art Institute of Chicago and is part of many public and private collections.

A fundraiser for the project, a progressive wine tasting, will be held Saturday starting at 4 p.m. at Deerprint Wine and continuing at Next Door Deli and the La Veta Inn.

More information about the memorial is available at

The Girl Aviators and the Phantom Airship ch 2

The Girl Aviators and the Phantom Airship,
By Margaret Burnham, first published 1912



It was a week after Fan Harding's visit to the Prescott home, on one windless, steamy morning, when the pearl-gray mist still lay in the smooth hollows running back from the coast, that The Golden Butterfly was wheeled out of her cocoon--so to speak--and dragged up the hillside at the back of the white, green-shuttered cottage. Miss Prescott, a sweet-faced old lady, whose cheek was still blooming despite the passage of the years, stood on the back porch of the house watching the process.

If Miss Prescott's face had been somewhat less cheerful than usual since her talk with Mr. Harding, all the clouds had been chased from it now. She watched as eagerly as a girl while Roy and Peggy, aided by Jess and Jimsy and two other lads, friends of Roy's from the village, dragged the brand new aeroplane up the hillside.

The excited chatter and laughter of the young folks rang out merrily as they worked--for it was work to get the 'plane, light as it was, up the grade. Fortunately--for Roy had no desire of a crowd to witness his initial ascent in the new 'plane--the Prescott house was some distance out of the village, and there were no near neighbors. The place had, in fact, once been a farm house, and although the acreage still was in the possession of Miss Prescott it was not worked.

A more ideal place for flying could not be imagined. Smooth slopes--unwooded, except in clumps--were all about. To the north glimmered the sparkling waters of Long Island Sound, while to the south stretched fertile farming land, devoted to crop-raising and pasturage.

Very business-like the young people looked as they hauled the monoplane up the hill. Roy and Jimsy wore leather puttees, trousers fashioned somewhat like riding breeches, and leather coats. On their heads were caps of the latter material, well padded within and provided with visors pierced with goggles.

The girls wore shirt waists, outing skirts and "sensible" walking boots. Jess had on her "Shaker" motoring bonnet, in which she looked very captivating indeed. Peggy's glossy hair, unadorned, but tightly confined in a net, formed her hair covering. Both girls were all a-tiptoe with excitement, for although Roy had had experience with aeroplanes, and so, in a limited way, had Jimsy, this feature of the sport was new to them.

At last the summit was reached, and Roy, after calling a halt, took a brief but comprehensive survey of the Golden Butterfly. This done, he climbed into the chassis--or body--of the thing, and leaning over the machinery he rapidly tested all the adjustments and examined the lubricating devices to see that all was in order. Everything appeared to be.

"Well," said Roy, with some self complacency, stepping out of the machine, "everything seems to be ready for the initial flight of the Golden Butterfly, my lords and gentlemen."

"And ladies, if you please," put in Jess, in a voice that was vibrant with excitement, despite her endeavor to keep calm.

"And ladies," added Roy, with a gallant bow in her direction.

Peggy in the meantime, like an anxious little mother fussing over dolls,
had been examining the aeroplane once more. Suddenly she gave a little cry. The exclamation interrupted Roy who was explaining, with great satisfaction, that everything was all right.

"I've looked it over and if there had been anything wrong it couldn't have escaped my notice," he observed rather pompously.

"Oh, Roy! Just look here! The spring of this landing wheel is all slack!"

This was the exclamation from Peggy that brought up Roy somewhat shortly in the midst of his self-confident harangue.

"By George, so it is, sis!" exclaimed Roy, reddening a little, while Lem Sidney, one of his chums, observed with a chuckle to Jeff Stokes, that Peggy appeared to know as much, if not more, about the machine than did Roy.

The spring was soon tightened by means of a monkey wrench. But that did not prevent them all realizing that had it not been for Peggy's acute observation a serious accident might have occurred. This done, even Peggy's anxious glances could not detect any other flaw in the machine.

"What time did that aviator fellow say he would show up?" then demanded Jimsy, abruptly.

"He should be here now," rejoined Roy. "I've half a mind to start anyhow. I can manage the machine I am very certain."

"Oh, Roy!" cried Peggy, reprovingly, "you know you promised aunty that you wouldn't do anything till Mr. Hal Homer got here."

"All right, sis," put in Roy, hastily, "don't be scared. I'll stick to my word."

"Hullo!" cried Jimsy, suddenly, "there comes an auto now."

"So it is," exclaimed the others, as a black touring car came whizzing down the road below them. It soon halted, and a figure in leather garments with gaitered legs alighted and hastened across the fields toward the party clustered about the aeroplane. The car was left in charge of the chauffeur.

As Jimsy had guessed, the new arrival proved to be Hal Homer, the well-known cross country flier, from whom Roy had taken some vacation time aviation lessons.

"He's awfully good looking," whispered Jess to Peggy, after introductions to the dapper young aviator had been extended by Roy.

"Oh, so--so," rejoined Peggy, with a toss of her head.

"Maybe you know some one who is handsomer?" questioned Jess with a mischievous side glance of her fine eyes.

Peggy flushed under her fair skin. But Jess laughed with good-humored raillery.

"Jimsy surely is a good-looking boy," she said, "if he hadn't a pug nose."

"A pug nose!" flared up Peggy. "Oh, Jess, how can----"

Then she stopped short in confusion while Jess laughed the more at her discomfiture.

Young Mr. Homer lost no time in starting operations. He ordered his helpers to secure the machine to a small tree growing nearby by means of a stout rope Roy had brought with him. This done, and the monoplane thus secured from flying away when her engine was started, he set the sparking and gasolene levers and threw in the switch. Roy and Jimsy, the latter acting under Roy's instructions, flew to the propeller.

The Golden Butterfly being a monoplane, this was in front of the machine.

"Be careful when you feel it start, to leap aside," warned Roy, "or you might be beheaded."

"I never lose my head in an emergency," joked Jimsy.

But just the same his heart beat, as did those of all of them but Hal Homer's, as he and Roy started to swing the great shiny wooden driving appliance.

Once, twice, three times they swung it round, exerting all their force. The fourth time they were rewarded by a feeble sigh from the engine--a sixty horse power motor.

All at once--Bang!

"Let go!" yelled Roy, jumping backward.

Jimsy in his hurry to obey stumbled and fell backward in a heap. He rolled some distance down the hill unnoticed, before he succeeded in stopping his motion. In the meantime the others--even Peggy--were too absorbed in the sight before them to watch Jimsy.

Simultaneously with the sharp report the propeller had whirled around swiftly. The next instant it was a mere gray blur, while a furious wind from its revolving blades swept the onlookers. Blue smoke spurted from the exhausts, mingled with flame, and the uproar was terrific.

The Golden Butterfly, like a thing of life, struggled at her moorings. The rope stretched and strained, taut as a violin string, under the pull. But it held fast, and after a while Aviator Homer slowed down the engine and finally stopped it, after adjusting a miss-fire in one of the cylinders. As the propeller became once more visible and then came to a stop, the boys broke into cheers, while the girls, too, voiced their enthusiasm.

"Oh, Peggy, isn't it a darling!" cried Jess.

"Aeroplanes are not usually called 'darlings,'" responded Peggy with assumed severity, "but--oh, Jess, it's--it's--a jewel and----"

"I'm dying for a ride in it!" burst in Jess.

"Then if you will consent to live a little longer I hope to have the pleasure of saving your life," put in Roy, gallantly.

"Oh, Roy! I can ride in it now!" gasped Jess, while Peggy clasped her hands and snuggled up close to her chum.

"Well, no, hardly just yet," laughed Roy, "but after Homer has tested her thoroughly out I guess you girls can take a spin."

"You know I'm going to learn to handle one," declared Peggy, as Roy made off once more. "I know a good deal about the theoretical part of it already."

"Well, theory wouldn't do you much good in a mile-long tumble," quoth Jess, sagely.

"Nonsense," rejoined Peggy. "Mr. Homer says one is as safe in an aeroplane, if one is careful, as in an auto."

"Safer I guess, the way that brother of mine drives sometimes," replied Jess. "He calls it 'burning up the road.' But--oh, look, they're casting off, or whatever it is you do to an airship when you turn her loose. Oh!"

Snatching off her motoring bonnet Jess began waving it furiously. While they had been talking the rope had been cast loose, and now, with Mr. Homer himself at the driving wheel, in cap and goggles, the engine was being started once more.

In wrapt excitement both girls stood breathless. So intent were they on the scene transpiring before them that they had not noticed the approach of a second auto on the road below. From it Fan Harding had alighted and hastened up the hill, after "parking" his machine, as if in fear that he would be too late to view the proceedings.

A sneering look was on his rather handsome face as he rapidly climbed the hill. He reached a position behind the two girls just as the aviator gave the signal to let go of the machine--to the rear structure of which Lem Sidney and Jeff Stokes were perspiringly clinging, their heels digging into the soft turf to steady themselves.

As Mr. Homer's hand swung backward and downward they let go. Instantly, like an arrow from a bow, the monoplane--the work of Peggy and Roy--was off. How it scudded across the hill top! Blue smoke and flame shot from its exhaust. Its operator sat hunched over his machinery looking, with his goggles, like some creature of the lower regions. Peggy clasped her hands and stood a-tiptoe breathlessly as it scudded along.

"Oh, will it rise?" she breathed, her color coming and going in her excitement.

"I'll bet ten dollars it won't fly any more than an earthworm."

Peggy turned swiftly, indignantly. Her color flamed and her eyes blazed angrily. Jess, hardly less indignant at the sneering tone and words, also faced about.

"Good morning, girls," said Fan Harding, easily, raising his motoring cap nonchalantly, "I came to see the ascension, but I'm afraid that it's going to be a descension."

"I think you're hateful to talk like that," cried Peggy, angrily, stamping her foot. "Our aeroplane will rise. It just will, I tell you--oh, gracious!"

She broke off in confusion and stood aghast for a moment. The swiftly scudding aeroplane had stopped its skittering over the grass and had come to an abrupt stop at a distance of about five hundred yards.

Already the boys were running across the turf toward it at top speed. The girls could see Mr. Homer clambering out of the chassis as the machine came to a standstill.

"Ha! Ha! just as I thought," chuckled Fan Harding, viciously, "that thing is a dead failure."

Poor Peggy, tears in her eyes at this seeming disaster, was stung fairly out of herself. She switched round on Fan Harding with a suddenness that made her skirt fly out and that young gentleman step precipitately backward.

"It isn't a failure, Fan Harding," she cried, with blazing eyes. "How dare you come here to sneer at us. We didn't invite you. Oh, I could----"

But Jess had seized her arm and succeeded in checking Peggy just in time. She whispered something to the indignant girl, who, with a scornful look at Fan Harding, turned and, with her friend, ran lightly off toward the stranded aeroplane.

"By Jove, I really thought for a minute she was going to slap my face," chuckled Fan Harding to himself. "How pretty she is when she is angry. But I guess if she knew what I do about certain affairs she wouldn't be quite so fresh with me."

He cast a glance at the aeroplane around which the anxious young people were now clustering thickly.

"If that thing is a success," he mused, as he strode off to join them, "so much the better for me. I think I could use an aeroplane. I don't see why I should let Roy Prescott beat me out at anything. Ah! They've started the engine again and--by ginger, she's rising! She's going up! She's flying!"

The small irregularity in the working of the engine, which had brought the plane to a stop, had been quickly remedied. Even Fan Harding, little as he liked Roy, could not help but join in the cheers as the Golden Butterfly, swinging in an easy circle, began to climb--higher and higher toward the fleecy clouds that flecked the blue dome above.

As for Peggy, she jumped up and down in her enthusiasm till her golden hair was tumbling in a tangle about her pink shells of ears.

"Oh, goody! goody! goody!" she squealed in the intensity of her joy.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

LADY AVIATORS: In History and Popular Fiction From the 1700s to World War II

Jack French, a former Navy officer and retired FBI Agent, is a well-known historian of the Golden Age of Radio; his book Private Eyelashes: Radio's Lady Detectives won the Agatha Award and is available from Bear Manor Media. He is a member of the Society of Phantom Friends (a group that collects girls series books) and has written several historical articles for their journal, "The Whispered Watchword."

A month or so ago, Jack gave a presentation at the 2011 Nostalgia Convention in Maryland, on women aviators, entitled: LADY AVIATORS: In History and Popular Fiction
From the 1700s to World War II.

He very kindle allowed me to put his entire presentation on the You Fly Girl website, so check it out at:

Friday, November 4, 2011

Fiction: The Girl Aviators and the Phantom Airship

The Girl Aviators and the Phantom Airshipby Margaret Burnham
Published in 1912

This book is in the public domain. We'll share a chapter every other day.

"Roy! Roy! where are you?"

Peggy Prescott came flying down the red-brick path, a rustling newspaper clutched in her hand.

"Here I am, sis,--what's up?"

The door of a long, low shed at the farther end of the old-fashioned garden opened as a clattering sound of hammering abruptly ceased. Roy Prescott, a wavy-haired, blue-eyed lad of seventeen, or thereabouts, stood in the portal. He looked very business-like in his khaki trousers, blue shirt and rolled up sleeves. In his hand was a shiny hammer.

Peggy, quite regardless of a big, black smudge on her brother's face, threw her arms around his neck in one of her "bear hugs," while Roy, boy-like, wriggled in her clasp as best he could.

"Now, just look here," cried Peggy, quite out of breath with her own vehemence. She flourished the paper under his nose and, imitating the traditional voice of a town crier, announced:

"Hear ye! Hear ye! Hear ye! Roy Prescott or any of the ambitious aviators--now is your chance! Great news from the front! Third and last

"You've got auctioneering, the Supreme Court and war times, mixed up a bit, haven't you?" asked Roy with masculine condescension, but gazing fondly at his vivacious sister nevertheless.

Peggy made a little face and then thrust forth the paper for his examination.

"Read that, you unenthusiastic person," she demanded, "and then tell me if you don't think that Miss Margaret Prescott has good reason to feel somewhat more enthusiastic than comports with her usual dignity and well-known icy reserve--ahem!"

"Good gracious, sis!" exclaimed the boy, as he scanned the news-sheet, "why this is just what we were wishing for, isn't it? It's our chance if we can only grasp it and make good."

"We can! We will!" exclaimed Peggy, striking an attitude and holding one hand above her glossy head. "Read it out, Roy, so that Monsieur Bleriot can hear it."

M. Bleriot, a French bull-dog, who had dignifiedly followed Peggy's mad career down the path, gazed up appreciatively, as Roy read out:

"Big Chance for Sky Boys!

"Ironmaster Higgins of Acatonick Offers Ten Thousand Dollars In Prizes for Flights and Planes."

"Ten thousand dollars, just think!" cried Peggy, clasping her hands one minute and the next stooping to caress M. Bleriot. "Oh, Roy! Do you think we could?"

"Could what? you indefinite person?" parried Roy, although his eyes were dancing and he knew well enough what his vivacious sister was driving at.

"Could win that ten thousand dollars, of course, you goose."

Roy laughed.

"It's not all offered in a lump sum," he rejoined. "Listen; there is a first prize of five thousand dollars for the boy under eighteen who makes the longest sustained flight in a plane of his own construction--with the exception of the engine, that is; and here's another of two thousand five hundred dollars to the glider making the best and longest sustained flight, and another of one thousand five hundred to the boy flying the most carefully constructed machine and the one bearing the most ingenious devices for perfecting the art of flying and--and--oh listen, Peggy!"

"I am--oh, I am!" breathed Peggy with half assumed breathlessness.

"There's a prize offered for girls!"


"Yes. Now don't say any more that girls are downtrodden and neglected by the bright minds of the day. Here it is, all in black and white, a prize of a whole thousand to the young lady who makes a successful flight. There, what do you think of that?"

"That Mr. Higgins is a mean old thing," pouted Peggy, "five thousand dollars to the successful boy and only one thousand to the successful girl. It's discrimination, that's what it is. Don't you read every day in the papers about girls and women making almost as good flights as the men? Didn't a--a Mademoiselle somebody-or-other make a flight round the bell tower at Bruges the other day, and hasn't Col. Roosevelt's daughter been up in one, and isn't there a regular school for women fliers at Washington, and--and----?"

"Didn't the suffragettes promise to drop 'Votes for Women' placards from the air upon the devoted heads of the British Parliament, you up to date young person?" finished Roy, teasingly.

Peggy made a dash for him but the boy dodged into the shed, closely followed by his sister.

But as she crossed the threshold Peggy's wild swoop became a decorous stroll, so to speak. She paused, all out of breath, beneath a spreading expanse of yellow balloon silk, braced and strengthened with brightly gleaming wires and stays,--one wing of the big monoplane upon which her brother had spent all his spare time for the past year. The flying thing was almost completed now. It stood in its shed, with its scarab-like wings outspread like a newly alighted yellow butterfly, which, by a stroke of ill luck, had found itself installed in a gloomy cage instead of the bright, open spaces of its native element.

In one corner of the shed was a large crate surrounded by some smaller ones. The large one had been partially opened and Peggy gave a little squeal of delight as her eyes fell on it.

"Oh, Roy, that's it?"

"That's it," rejoined the boy proudly, lifting a bit of sacking from the contents of the opened crate, "isn't it a beauty?"

The lifted covering had exposed a gleam of bright, scarlet enamel, and the glint of polished brass. To Roy the contents of that crate was the splendid new motor for his aeroplane. But to Peggy, just then, it was something far different. A bit of a mist dimmed her shining eyes for an instant. Her voice grew very sober.

"Three thousand dollars--oh, Roy, it scares me!"

Roy crossed the shed and threw an arm about his sister's neck.

"Don't be frightened, sis," he breathed in an assuring tone, "it's going to be all right. Why, can't you see that the very first thing that happens is a chance to win $5,000?"

"I know that. But that contest is not to come off for more than a month and--and supposing someone should have a better machine than you?"

For an instant that air of absolute assurance, which truth to tell, had made Roy some enemies, and which was his greatest fault, left him. His face clouded and he looked troubled. But it was as momentary as the cloud-shadow that passes over a summer wheat field.

"It'll be all right, sis," he rejoined, confidently, "and if it isn't, I can always sell out to Simon Harding. You know he said that his offer held good at any time."

"I know that, Roy," rejoined Peggy, seriously, "but we could never do that. We could neither of us go against father's wishes like that. He--well, Roy, it's not to be thought of. Poor dad----"

Her bright eyes filled with tears as her mind travelled back to a scene of a year before when Mr. Prescott had ceased from troubling with the affairs of this world, and commended his children to the care of their maiden aunt--his sister with whom, since their mother's death some years before, the little family had made their home.

Poor Mr. Prescott had been that hopelessly impracticable creature--an inventor. Fortunately for himself, however, he had a small fortune of his own so that he had been enabled to carry on his dreaming and planning without embarrassing his family. Roy and Peggy had both been sent to good boarding schools, and had known, in fact, very little of home life after their mother's death which had occurred several years before, as already said.

Mr. Prescott, in his dreamy, abstract way, had cared dearly for his children. But those other children of his--the offsprings of his brain--that surrounded him in his workshop, had, somehow, seemed always to mean more to him. And so the young Prescotts had grown up without the benefit of home influences.

On Peggy's naturally sweet, vivacious character, this had not made so much difference. But Roy had developed, in spite of his real sterling worth and ability, into a headstrong, rather self-opinionated lad. His success at school in athletics and the studies which he cared about "mugging" at had not tended to decrease these qualities.

It had come as a shock to both of them a year before when two telegrams had been despatched--one to Peggy's school up the Hudson, and the other to Roy up in Connecticut, telling them to return to the Long Island village of Sandy Bay at once. Their father--that half-shadowy being--was very ill.

The messages had not exaggerated the seriousness of the situation. Three days after his children reached his side Mr. Prescott gently breathed his last, dying, as he had lived, so quietly, that the end had come before they realized it. But in those last brief moments Roy came to know his father better than ever before. He learned that the dream of his parent had been to produce an aeroplane free from the defects of its forerunners,--a safe vehicle for passengers or freight. How far he had progressed in this there was no time for him to tell before the end came. But Roy, interested already in aeronautics at school, where he had been president of "The High Fliers"--a model aeroplane association,--eagerly took up his father's desire that he would try to carry on his work, and began to take lessons in flying.

In the shed which had been Mr. Prescott's workshop the framework of an aeroplane already stood. And with the aid of what money his father had left him, Roy had carried on the work till now it was almost completed. But the three thousand dollars which had gone for the motor had completely exhausted the lad's legacy. As Peggy put it, all their eggs were in an "aerial basket."

But how much Peggy had aided him, in what had, in the last few months possessed all his thoughts, Roy did not guess. To what extent her encouragement had spurred him on to surmount seemingly unconquerable difficulties, and how she had actually aided him in constructing the machine, his ambition never realized. Not innately selfish, Roy was yet too used to having his own way to attribute his success to any one but himself.

Sometimes, brave, loyal little Peggy, try as she might, could not disguise this from herself, and it pained her a good deal. But she had uncomplainingly, ungrudgingly, aided her brother, without hoping for, or expecting, the appreciation she sometimes felt she was really entitled to. But her great love for her brother kept Peggy from ever betraying to him or any one else an iota of her inner feelings.

So intent had the brother and sister been on their talk that neither of them had noticed, while they conversed, that a big four-door touring car, aglitter with gleaming maroon paint, and with a long, low hood concealing a powerful engine, had glided up to the white gate in the picket fence surrounding Miss Prescott's old fashioned cottage.

From it a frank, pleasant-faced lad and an unusually striking girl, tall, slender and with a glossy mass of black hair coiled attractively on her shapely head, had alighted.

Hearing the sound of voices from the open door of the shed in which The Golden Butterfly, as Peggy had christened it, was nearing completion, they, without ceremony, at once made their way toward it. Peggy, glancing up from her sad reverie at the sound of footsteps, gave a glad little cry as she beheld the visitors standing framed in the sunlight of the open door. While she and the tall, dark-haired girl mingled their contrasting tresses in an exuberant school-girl caress, the lad and Roy Prescott, were, boy fashion, slapping one another on the back and shaking hands with just as much enthusiasm.

"Why, if this isn't simply delightful, Jess, you dear old thing," cried the delighted Peggy, as, with both hands on her chum's shoulders, she held Jess Bancroft off at arm's length, the better to scrutinize her handsome face, "and Jimsy, too," as she turned to the lad with a bright smile of welcome; "wherever did you two come from?"

"From the clouds?" demanded Roy.

"No, hardly, although I don't wonder at your asking such a question," laughed Jess, merrily, exchanging greetings with Roy. "Roy Prescott, positively I can see your wings sprouting."

They all laughed heartily at this, while Jess ran on to explain that she and her brother were stopping for the summer at Seaview Towers, a summer estate which their father, a Wall Street power, had leased for the season. Of course, explained the merry girl, who had been Peggy's closest chum at school, her first thought had been to take a spin over in her new motor car and look up her friends, for Roy and James--or Jimsy--Bancroft had been almost as close chums as the girls.

"And so this is the wonderful Golden Butterfly that you wrote to me about?" exclaimed Jess enthusiastically after the first buzz of conversation subsided.

"Yes, this is it," said Roy with great satisfaction in his tones, "and I'm proud of it, I can tell you. I think I've made a success of it."

Jess and Jimsy exchanged glances. And then Jess stole a look at Peggy, but no cloud had crossed the face of Roy's sister.

"Oh, you darling," thought Jess, "you're too sweet for anything. I just how much you contributed to the Golden Butterfly's existence, and yet you won't detract a bit from Roy's self satisfaction."

As for Jimsy Bancroft, he said nothing. He glanced rather oddly at Roy for an instant. Then his eyes turned to Peggy's face. Perhaps they dwelt there for rather a long period of time. At any rate, they were still fixed on her brave beauty when a sudden shadow fell across the stream of sunlight that poured into the open portal of the workshop.

"Ah! So this is the place in which young genius finds its habitation;" grated out a rather harsh, unpleasant voice.

They all looked up. Perhaps none of them--Jimsy least of all--was pleased at the interruption. The newcomer was a tall, angular man, with a withered, clean-shaven face,--what Peggy called a "money making face"; and surely that described Simon Harding, as he stood there in his black, none-too-new garments, and his square-toed shoes. One could fairly catch the avaricious glint in his eyes as he squinted rapidly over the new aeroplane's outlines.

By his side stood a youth who was, so far as dress went at any rate, the exact opposite of the elder man. Fanning Harding--or Fan as he was usually called--was dressed in elaborate motoring costume. His goggles, of the latest and most exaggerated design, were shoved up off his countenance now, exposing to view a good-looking browned face. It was marred, however, by the same restless, strained look that could be seen on his father's visage.

"We're not intruding, I hope," he hastened to say, coming forward with a cordiality that seemed somewhat forced.

"Not in the least," said Peggy, hastily, realizing that none of them had perhaps looked very cordial, "won't you come in?"

Fan Harding, bestowing an admiring glance on her, seemed to be about to accept. His father, however, struck in:

"I'll leave you with the young folks, my boy, while I go up to the house. I have some business with Miss Prescott."

As he shuffled off, Peggy and Roy exchanged somewhat uneasy glances. What business could this old man--in some respects a power financially and otherwise in Sandy Beach--have with their aunt?

"Say Peggy," spoke up Fan Harding, suddenly, "ain't you going to introduce me to your friends? And how about inviting us all to have some of those strawberries Pop and I noticed as we came down the path?"

"Well, he isn't a bit backward about coming forward!" thought Jess as the young people, with due formality, went through the ceremony of introductions.