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13 C.A.P. copy FROM THE FLYING PIONEERS BIOGRAPHIES OF HAROLD E. MOREHOUSE CLYDE VERNON CESSNA Pioneer Plane Builder - Aviator - Founder of Cessna Aircraft Company [[image]] Clyde V. Cessna was born at Hawthorne, Iowa, December 5,1879. When he was about one year old the family moved to a farm near Rago, Kansas, where he grew up doing farm work and attending nearby schools. Mechanically inclined, he learned to service and operate machinery, including grain thresheres. Later his interest turned to automobiles, first in mechanical and service work, then he discovered he could sell, and by 1910 was head of the Overland Automobile Agency at Enid, Oklahoma. There he sold over one hundred cars and thoroughly established himself. Late that year Cessna learned that Moisant International Aviators were to make airplane flights at Oklahoma City, during January or February 1911. There he saw French pilots Rene Barrier, Rene Simon and Roland Garros, and American Charles K. Hamilton flying. All the Frenchmen used Bleriot-type monoplanes while Hamilton flew a Curtiss biplane. The troupe also staged races between a Fiat automobile, driven by Joe Seymour, and their planes in flight. Barrier made some 15-minute cross-country trips while there. Cessna was very interested, and determined that he would build a plane and 1
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