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—Early Wright Student Aviator — Aerodynamic pioneer


Albert A. Merrill was born in Hyde Park, Massachusetts, October 23d, 1874. He graduated from Boston High School in 1892, but was a student of aeronautics as early as 1890.

In 1895 Merrill formed the Boston Aeronautical Society, dedicated to kite flying, ballooning, the history of flight, [[strikethrough]] aerial investigation [[/strikethrough]] and discussion. In 1898 he built a biplane glider and reportedly made some flights with it.

Merrill was very [[strikethrough]] studied and took a great [[/strikethrough]] interested in the work of Lilienthal, Chanute, Montgomery and [[strikethrough]] then [[/strikethrough]] the early work of the Wright Brothers. He sponsored and lectured on a course of aerial navigation at the Boston Y.M.C.A. in 1908 and 1909, and was a founder member and a frequent speaker at [[strikethrough]] of [[/strikethrough]] the Harvard Aeronautical Society and the Aero Club of New England in 1909-1910. [[strikethrough]] , and a frequent speaker for both organizations. [[/strikethrough]] He was also a member of the organizing and contest committees of the Harvard-Boston Aviation Meet held September 3d to 16th, 1910. At that time he was writing technical and news articles for American aviation magazines.

Merrill enrolled for flying lessons at the Burgess Flying School at Squantum, Massachusetts in March, 1911, but instruction did not start until June when Burgess, then Atwood, gave him a few lessons; then he was sent to Dayton to finish his course. At the Wright School instructor Cliff Turpin completed his training.

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