A report on Aerial Experiment Association

AEA member John Alexander Douglas McCurdy at the controls of an airplane during an aviation 'meet' near Toronto, Ontario, Canada, c. August 1911. The starboard-side of the transverse "shoulder-yoke" hinged structure for aileron control, in the general form of an upper seat support frame, is visible beside the seated pilot.
Aerial Experiment Association members Casey Baldwin, Tom Selfridge, Glenn Curtiss, Alexander Graham Bell, John McCurdy and Augustus Post serving as observer from Aero Club of America.

Canadian-American aeronautical research group formed on 30 September 1907, under the leadership of Dr. Alexander Graham Bell.

- Aerial Experiment Association
AEA member John Alexander Douglas McCurdy at the controls of an airplane during an aviation 'meet' near Toronto, Ontario, Canada, c. August 1911. The starboard-side of the transverse "shoulder-yoke" hinged structure for aileron control, in the general form of an upper seat support frame, is visible beside the seated pilot.

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Glenn Curtiss c. 1909

Glenn Curtiss

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American aviation and motorcycling pioneer, and a founder of the U.S. aircraft industry.

American aviation and motorcycling pioneer, and a founder of the U.S. aircraft industry.

Glenn Curtiss c. 1909
Glenn Curtiss on his V-8 motorcycle in 1907
The June Bug on its prize-winning historic flight with Curtiss at the controls
Souvenir postcard of the Grande Semaine d'Aviation, 1909
"Firm Believers in Trans-Atlantic Aviation", Porte and Curtiss on the cover of Aero and Hydro, March 14, 1914
A Curtiss JN-4 (Jenny) on a training flight during World War I
Time cover, October 13, 1924
Glenn H. Curtiss's pilot license
The 1913 Langley Medal awarded to Curtiss
Tombstone
Curtiss Motorcycle at San Francisco Motorcycle Club

In 1908, Curtiss joined the Aerial Experiment Association, a pioneering research group, founded by Alexander Graham Bell at Beinn Bhreagh, Nova Scotia, to build flying machines.

Bell c. undefined 1917

Alexander Graham Bell

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Scottish-born inventor, scientist and engineer who is credited with patenting the first practical telephone.

Scottish-born inventor, scientist and engineer who is credited with patenting the first practical telephone.

Bell c. undefined 1917
Melville House, the Bells' first home in North America, now a National Historic Site of Canada
Bell, top right, providing pedagogical instruction to teachers at the Boston School for Deaf Mutes, 1871. Throughout his life, he referred to himself as "a teacher of the deaf".
Alexander Graham Bell's telephone patent drawing, March 7, 1876
The master telephone patent, 174465, March 7, 1876
An actor playing Bell in a 1926 film holds Bell's first telephone transmitter
Bell at the opening of the long-distance line from New York to Chicago in 1892
Alexander Graham Bell, his wife Mabel Gardiner Hubbard, and their daughters Elsie (left) and Marian ca. 1885
The Brodhead–Bell mansion, the Bell family residence in Washington, D.C., from 1882 to 1889
Alexander Graham Bell in his later years
Photophone receiver, one half of Bell's wireless optical communication system, ca. 1880
Bell's HD-4 on a test run ca. 1919
AEA Silver Dart ca. 1909
Bell statue by A. E. Cleeve Horne in front of the Bell Telephone Building of Brantford, Ontario, The Telephone City. (Brantford Heritage Inventory, City of Brantford)
A quote by Alexander Graham Bell engraved in the stone wall within the Peace Chapel of the International Peace Garden (in Manitoba Canada and North Dakota, USA).
The Bell Museum, Cape Breton, part of the Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site
A.G. Bell issue of 1940
Bell, an alumnus of the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, receiving an honorary Doctor of Laws degree (LL.D.) at the university in 1906

Bell was a supporter of aerospace engineering research through the Aerial Experiment Association (AEA), officially formed at Baddeck, Nova Scotia, in October 1907 at the suggestion of his wife Mabel and with her financial support after the sale of some of her real estate.

"Casey" Baldwin at Ridley College, circa 1900

Frederick Walker Baldwin

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Hydrofoil and aviation pioneer and partner of the famous inventor Alexander Graham Bell.

Hydrofoil and aviation pioneer and partner of the famous inventor Alexander Graham Bell.

"Casey" Baldwin at Ridley College, circa 1900
Aerial Experiment Association. Casey (second from right), Bell (centre), McCurdy, Curtis, and Selfridge

On October 1, 1907, with the encouragement and generous financial support of Bell's wife Mabel Hubbard Bell, Bell, Baldwin, McCurdy, and two Americans, Glenn Curtiss and Thomas Selfridge, formed the Aerial Experiment Association (AEA) with the expressed purpose to "get in the air".

Lieutenant Thomas Selfridge (1882–1908)

Thomas Selfridge

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First lieutenant in the U.S. Army and the first person to die in an airplane crash.

First lieutenant in the U.S. Army and the first person to die in an airplane crash.

Lieutenant Thomas Selfridge (1882–1908)
"Red Wing" aeroplane
Wreckage of the Wright Flyer that took the life of Tom Selfridge
Tending to one of the victims
Selfridge and Orville Wright prior to takeoff on the fatal flight.

He was also the United States government representative to the Aerial Experiment Association (AEA), which was chaired by Alexander Graham Bell, and he became its first secretary.

Aileron

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Hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft.

Hinged flight control surface usually forming part of the trailing edge of each wing of a fixed-wing aircraft.

An aircraft 'rolling', or 'banking', with its ailerons
An aileron and roll trim tab of a light aircraft
Boulton's 1864 paper, "On Aërial Locomotion" describing several designs including ailerons.
A 1912 Farman HF.20 biplane with single acting ailerons hinged from the rear spar. The ailerons hang down when at rest and are pushed up into position when flying by the force of the air, being pulled down by cable to provide control.
A Yak-52 using ailerons to roll counter-clockwise during an aerobatic maneuver
A 1937 Waco VKS-7 cabin-class biplane with its pairs of quadruple ailerons linked by an external vertical connector to simplify its aileron control system. The ailerons on each side thus move either up or down together.
Aileron horn visible extending from the wingtop on the top wing of a Fokker Dr. I
Extra 300L aircraft, from below, showing light coloured quadrilateral spades at roughly midwing.
Mass balancing of the Frise-hinged ailerons on a Messerschmitt Bf 110 "zerstörer"
The Blériot VIII with wingtip ailerons in 1908, deflected for a slight right bank.
A USAF F-16 displaying its rear tailerons, which move independently of each other to provide both pitch and roll control. Note the different attack angles visible.

On May 18, 1908, engineer and aircraft designer Frederick Baldwin, a member of the Aerial Experiment Association headed by Alexander Graham Bell, flew their first aileron-controlled aircraft, the AEA White Wing, which was later copied by the U.S. aeronautical pioneer Glenn Curtiss the same year, with the AEA June Bug.

John Alexander Douglas McCurdy

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Canadian aviation pioneer and the 20th Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia from 1947 to 1952.

Canadian aviation pioneer and the 20th Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia from 1947 to 1952.

The AEA Silver Dart in flight, J.A.D. McCurdy at the controls, c. 1910
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In 1907, he joined Alexander Graham Bell's Aerial Experiment Association.

Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company

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American aircraft manufacturer originally founded by Glenn Hammond Curtiss and Augustus Moore Herring in Hammondsport, New York.

American aircraft manufacturer originally founded by Glenn Hammond Curtiss and Augustus Moore Herring in Hammondsport, New York.

Curtiss-Herring flying machine photographed in Mineola, New York.
Curtiss 160 hp reconnaissance biplane (1918)
Curtiss military aircraft being tested in College Park, Maryland circa 1912

In 1907, Glenn Curtiss was recruited by the scientist Dr. Alexander Graham Bell as a founding member of Bell's Aerial Experiment Association (AEA), with the intent of establishing an aeronautical research and development organization.

AEA June Bug

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Curtiss in the June Bug, July 4, 1908.
Modern operational replica of the June Bug in the Glenn H. Curtiss Museum in Hammondsport, New York
Curtiss June Bug 3-view drawing from Aero Digest December 1928

The June Bug (or Aerodrome #3) was an American "pioneer era" aircraft designed and flown by Glenn H. Curtiss and built by the Aerial Experiment Association (A.E.A) in 1908.

Wright brothers' home at 7 Hawthorn Street, Dayton about 1900. Wilbur and Orville built the covered wrap-around porch in the 1890s.

Wright brothers

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Orville Wright (August 19, 1871 – January 30, 1948) and Wilbur Wright (April 16, 1867 – May 30, 1912), together known as the Wright brothers, were American aviation pioneers generally credited with inventing, building, and flying the world's first successful motor-operated airplane.

Orville Wright (August 19, 1871 – January 30, 1948) and Wilbur Wright (April 16, 1867 – May 30, 1912), together known as the Wright brothers, were American aviation pioneers generally credited with inventing, building, and flying the world's first successful motor-operated airplane.

Wright brothers' home at 7 Hawthorn Street, Dayton about 1900. Wilbur and Orville built the covered wrap-around porch in the 1890s.
The Wright brothers' bicycle at the National Air and Space Museum
Wright 1899 kite: front and side views, with control sticks. Wing-warping is shown in lower view. (Wright brothers drawing in Library of Congress)
Park Ranger Tom White demonstrates a replica of the Wright brothers 1899 box kite at the Wright Brothers National Memorial
Chanute's hang glider of 1896. The pilot may be Augustus Herring.
The 1900 glider. No photo was taken with a pilot aboard.
Replica of the Wright brothers' wind tunnel at the Virginia Air and Space Center
At left, 1901 glider flown by Wilbur (left) and Orville. At right, 1902 glider flown by Wilbur (right) and Dan Tate, their helper. Dramatic improvement in performance is apparent. The 1901 glider flies at a steep angle of attack due to poor lift and high drag. In contrast, the 1902 glider flies at a much flatter angle and holds up its tether lines almost vertically, clearly demonstrating a much better lift-to-drag ratio.
Wilbur Wright pilots the 1902 glider over the Kill Devil Hills, October 10, 1902. The single rear rudder is steerable; it replaced the original fixed double rudder.
Wilbur makes a turn using wing-warping and the movable rudder, October 24, 1902.
A Wright engine, serial number 17, c. 1910, on display at the New England Air Museum
The first flight of the Wright Flyer, December 17, 1903, Orville piloting, Wilbur running at wingtip.
famous photograph
Orville's notebook entry of December 17, 1903
Orville in flight over Huffman Prairie in Wright Flyer II. Flight 85, approximately 1760 ft in 40 1⁄5 seconds, November 16, 1904.
Wilbur flying almost four circles of Huffman Prairie, about 2 3⁄4 miles in 5 minutes 4 seconds; flight 82, November 9, 1904.
Wilbur's logbook showing diagram and data for first circle flight on September 20, 1904
Wright Flyer III piloted by Orville over Huffman Prairie, October 4, 1905. Flight #46, covering 20 3⁄4 miles in 33 minutes 17 seconds; the last photographed flight of the year
The Dayton Daily News reported the October 5 flight on page 9, with agriculture and business news.
The modified 1905 Flyer at the Kill Devil Hills in 1908, ready for practice flights. Note there is no catapult derrick; all takeoffs were used with the monorail alone.
Soaring flight, Kitty Hawk, Oct. 1911 "Arrows indicate [the] 50 mile[ per hour] wind, showing how [the] machine was sustained in a stationary position".
Orville demonstrating the flyer to the U.S. Army, Fort Myer, Virginia September 1908. Photo: by C.H. Claudy.
Hart O. Berg (left), the Wrights' European business agent, and Wilbur at the flying field near Le Mans.
The Fort Myer crash. Photo by C.H. Claudy.
The Wright Model A Flyer flown by Wilbur 1908–1909 and launching derrick, France, 1909
Wrights' 1906 US patent 821393
The Wright brothers at the Belmont Park Aviation Meet in 1910 near New York
Elwood Doherty, a Curtiss pilot, coaxes the structurally modified Langley Aerodrome into the air above the surface of Keuka Lake near Hammondsport, New York, September 17, 1914.
Pieces of fabric and wood from the 1903 Wright Flyer traveled to the Moon in the Apollo 11 Lunar Module Eagle, and are exhibited at the Wright Brothers National Memorial
The original 1903 Wright Flyer in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.
The back of the US Airman Certificate with a picture of the Wright brothers.
Orville Wright, 1928
The Wright family plot at Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum
Aircraft certification for the Ingenuity helicopter on Mars, April 2021

Curtiss was at the time a member of the Aerial Experiment Association (AEA), headed by Alexander Graham Bell, where in 1908 he had helped reinvent wingtip ailerons for their Aerodrome No. 2, known as the AEA White Wing

AEA Red Wing

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The Red Wing (or Aerodrome #1) was an early aircraft designed by Thomas Selfridge and built by the Aerial Experiment Association in 1908.