Private Pilots and the Rise of Civil Aviation with Alan Meyer

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By Hagley Museum and Library and Hagley Museum. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
In his talk, Alan Meyer provides an engaging account of private aviation, taking the audience inside a community that required exceptionally high skill levels, celebrated facing and overcoming risk, and encouraged fierce personal independence. Meyer uses the rise and fall of the Ercoupe, a personal plane lauded for its safety and intuitive operation, to show how ideas about pilot skill influenced the market for small airplanes in the postwar era—and the makeup of the flying community. Despite the Ercoupe's revolutionary—and life-saving—design, it was largely spurned and ridiculed by this community of mostly male aviators, who valued the high barriers to personal flying. Through the failure of the Ercoupe, Meyer explains how the technology of flying continued to reinforce these values.

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