Viewing page 3 of 10


Early Wright Instructor, test and Exhibition Pilot 


Arch Freeman was from Flushing, L.I., N.Y., and had been in vaudeville before entering aviation. As a guest, he was a passenger on  several flights made by Al Welsh and O. G. Simmons at a private flying exhibition given at "REST HILL", the country estate of Robert Collier at Wickatunk, N. J., on October 14-16, 1911. As a result he became interested in flying and started instructions at the Wright School at Nassau Boulevard, L. I., in late October. He was taught by Al Welsh, Wright Company instructor, and obtained Pilot License No. 83, dated January 10, 1912, at Dayton, Ohio, on a Wright.

He started flying for Harry Atwood in Boston during the early Spring of 1912 and on May 20 made an extended flight over Boston Harbor, circling Fort Heath, the battleships Rhode Island and New Jersey at anchor, and dropped toy bombs during a military demonstration.

During the Spring and early Summer months, he was an assistant instructor at the Clayton and Craig Flying School, working with Chief Instructor Harry N. Atwood, also flying exhibitions occasionally at New England points. That fall he began to fly in exhibitions on his own, flying at Newark, Ohio, on October 2nd and carrying passengers. October 11th he flew at Suffolk, Va. Later that month he was making daily flights as an attraction at Riverview Park, Louisville, Ky., carrying passengers.

In 1913 he was an instructor for the Wright Company at Mineola, Long Island, N.Y. Through 1914 he continued as an instructor and did occasional exhibition flying for the Wright Company. He was retained as an instructor at Mineola, L.I., in the Spring of 1915 after the Wright interests were sold to an Eastern group. In 1916 he became associated with Howard Rinehart in a private aviation enterprise, owned by E. A. Deeds and C. F. Kettering on the site which later became McCook Field, near Dayton, Ohio. There he assisted in the training of a number of students, including many Canadians sent there under contract with the U. S. Government.

When the Dayton-Wright Co. was formed in April, 1917, he became a member of their staff of pilots to do test, demonstrating and acceptance flying on World War 1 planes. He did a considerable amount of flying at the various Government Training Fields on acceptance tests of the Dayton-Wright built Standard T-1 training planes during 1917. In the late Fall and Winter months of 1917-1918 he began test flying the first Dayton-Wright built DH-4 aeroplanes with Liberty engines. After production started on these, early in 1918, he became a member of the staff of acceptance pilots flying new aeroplanes as

Transcription Notes:
Note: The text breaks off abruptly to continue in the next page. IMPORTANT NOTE: "October 2d" (Line 29) was changed by me to "October 2nd", as it was a simple spelling error in the passage.

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