Viewing page 7 of 21

[[stamped]] FROM THE FLYING PIONEERS BIOGRAPHIES OF HAROL E. MOREHOUSE [[/stamped]]

Joseph L Cato
Pioneer West Coast Plane Builder - Pilot - Aviation Engineer

[[image]]

Joseph L. Cato was born at North Yakima, Washington February 18,1889.  Later his parents moved to Vancouver, Washington where he attended private Schools.  The family then moved to Stockton, Cal. where Cato continued his schooling.  Being mechanically inclined he started to work in a machine shop after school to help with his education.

Naturally interested in engineering and scientific subjects Cato first became intrigued with aeronautics when he discovered some articles on gliders and gliding in Scientific American Magazine in the local library in 1903.  Cato became so absorbed that he read everything he could find on the subject, including the gliding experiments of the Wright Brothers.  This resulted in his building some model wing sections which he towed in the wind to determine the centers of lift and pressure.  After making these experiments he started the design and construction of a 28 foot glider, with which he succeeded in making one good hop before a smashup ended the project.  Later Cato moved to San Francisco where he took a night school course in Engineering.

In February, 1908 Cato submitted plans and specifications for a powered aircraft to the War Department, Washington, D. C. where he understood bids  

1
Please note that the language and terminology used in this collection reflects the context and culture of the time of its creation, and may include culturally sensitive information. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution, but is available in its original form to facilitate research. For questions or comments regarding sensitive content, access, and use related to this collection, please contact transcribe@si.edu.