PILOT STORIES: James C.
Carrying mail brought down from New York the second day of service, Edgerton took off at 6:30 p.m. May 16, 1918 on the Philadelphia to Washington leg of the route. Major Fleet ordered a line-up of cars to light the Polo Fields for his flyer so
Edgerton would be able to find the field for landing. During
his flight, Edgerton flew into a thunderstorm at 10,000 feet.
"One instant the airplane became a tremendous elevator,
leaping skyward hundreds of feet," he noted, saying, "then the bottom promptly falls out , dizzy fall of hundreds of feet.
I was attacked by solid waves of air."
When he landed, Edgerton and his mechanic looked
over the airplane for damage. The wooden propeller had taken
a beating in the storm.
Paint was chewed off; slivers of wood had been chipped away, unbalancing the propeller; and the fuselage had been flooded with
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James C. Edgerton.