BANGOR — The Maine Air Museum announced that it is commemorating the 80th anniversary of the flying tour of Maine made in August 1934 by famed female aviator and pioneer Amelia Earhart. Her flights were made in a 10-passenger Stinson SM6000 Trimotor airliner operated by Boston & Maine Airways. As one of the founders and a Vice President of B&M she had two missions — that of promoting aviation careers to women, and for the airline, the growth of air travel to the public at large, which was still in its infancy in much of New England.
Following a portion of the Boston & Maine routes in Maine, she made stops at the airport in Bangor on Aug. 12, giving free airplane rides to hundreds of admiring females and signing autographs for the crowds at each of the then fledgling Maine airports.
The Maine Air Museum is commemorating Earhart’s visit to the city with a special display which includes a mannequin dressed as she did during that period, including a vintage flight helmet and goggles. The display includes actual and representative photos of Earhart taken while on her tour, reproduced news accounts of her visit, photos and details about the Boston & Maine Trimotor aircraft in use at that time.
For the children, and seniors who recall their childhood possessions, there is a vintage metal toy aircraft which replicated the Trimotor plane of that era.
With continued fascination of Earhart, even after so many decades, and In order to provide more opportunity for the public to view the exhibit commemorating Earhart’s visit to Maine, the Maine Air Museum, in cooperation with the Bangor International Airport, will place the exhibit at the airport terminal through Sunday, Aug. 24. Thereafter, the display will move to Waterville for a similar period and then to Augusta, just as Earhart’s “Grand Tour of Maine” did all those years ago. With the close of the 2014 season, the Earhart exhibit will be added to the permanent displays housed at the Maine Air Museum at 98 Maine Ave.
The display will give the public an opportunity to commemorate one of America’s most famous pilots and to discover or relive a bit of Maine aviation history, said Chuck Byrum, Air Museum director.
For information about the schedule for “Amelia’s Grand Tour of Maine” exhibit, call Robert Umberger of the Maine Air Museum board of directors at 216-9113.