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Soaring..not War..ing 1940's Page 2 Hattie Meyers Weaver Junkin Before World War One there were the back yard gliders, the flying machines spelled aeroplane. The popular song was, "Come Josephine in my Flying Machine." Mothers felt themselves distinguished from the commonplace who had sons building model aeroplanes. When same sons took up flying, they longed for the commonplace .. the commuter on the five fifteen. (Another song.) Aviators were thought romantic perhaps, a circus sort of bum, the modern "black sheep". He would never earn a living, flying. He brings home some different looking friends and who flying cannot get insurance. The World War Era saw these seventy youngster, just of age, doing their bit as Civilian Flying Instructors in the United States Signal Corps. They created their own stunts and taught Uncle Sam's Cadets to fly. Off came the white hat band, they were 2nd. Lieuts, with their gold wings. C.F.I's started 1917 as Junior Instructors then by 1918 were Senior Instructors with solo fields putting the primary general group cadet thru his stunts. The salary raised from $300 mo. to $400 month but no Army insurance. Brilliant performances the services rendered by this handful of young gallants...and the performances of their students, now officers, overseas. They trained on OX5's powered "Jennies";"crates" the Standard castor-oil thrower dubbed "Ye Pig". Aerodynamics had been learned via broken bones, lifetime injury, a friend killed in a crash of wooden fuselaged aeroplanes. Lads who found their church in the air, with a hope and faith aviation would help end this War to end Wars .. when their sons would be eligible. The Roaring Twenties found uniforms laid aside. Bathtub gin, raccon [[raccoon]] coated males, short skirted females, and rolled top stockings.
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