Viewing page 38 of 52

York, September 9th and 10th. His next exhibition was at Conneaut, Ohio, on Labor Day. On September 20th he flew from Gratz, Pennsylvania, to Elizabethville ,Pennsylvania, via Millersburg. He exhibited at Elizabethville, then flew to Lykens, Pennsylvania, for a date there. At this time Early Beers was serving as his mechanic and flew with him on cross-country flights. Johnson exhibited at Dunkirk, New York, October 15th to 18th, using a Curtiss-engined Thomas hydro. There he made two 2-minute flights daily. At Paducah, Kentucky, on November 20th he made two flights us[[crossed-out]]d[[/crossed-out]] the Thomas Flying Boat with Austro-Daimler engine. From there he went to Louisville, Kentucky where he made daily exhibitions until December 16th. Another Tomas student, Charles Herrmann, was with him at Louisville as his mechanic. 

Apparently Johnson severed his connection with the Thomas Brothers Company at that time and made plans to go into the flying-school business for himself. He proposed to start a winter school in Florida at once, then return to New York State in the spring for summer operations. After purchasing a Thomas flying boat, he left for Florida in January, 1914, where he operated a school and carried passengers during the winter months at Jacksonville. He returned North in the spring and in early May made daily flights at Greenwich Connecticut, for two weeks. On May 30, 1914, he started the Walter E. Johnson School of Aviation at Conesus Lake, Livonia, New York, using a dual control Thomas hydro and the flying boat he had been using in Florida. With him in the venture were his former Thomas students C.A. Herrman and W.H. Minnerly. The school started with five students and the prospects of a promising summer-resort passenger-carrying business. Johnson also took on some exhibition work that season and flew at Owasco Lak, Auburn, New York, on June 30th and Ludington, Michigan, July 3rd and 4th at a harbor celebration. 

Johnson continued to operate his school and passenger business at Livonia through the 1914 season, but discontinued it that year, as during the early spring months of 1915 he became a pilot for the Curtiss Company at Hammondsport. 

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 As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology.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