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In the summer of 1896, Octave Chanute conducted hundreds of flights in kites and gliders of many different configurations. Chanute, who was already in his mid-60s, flew the gliders at Miller Beach on the Indiana Dunes along with his associates, August Herring and William "Bill" Avery.

A meticulous engineer, Chanute made detailed notes about the performance of the various configurations in differing conditions. Chanute’s biplane glider stayed aloft 14 sec. and traveled 359 ft. Chanute’s experimentation, including his detailed notes and his methodology, proved helpful to the Wright brothers' efforts.[1]


[1] Dream of Wings: Americans and the Airplane 1875–1905; by Tom D. Crouch; Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1989, p. 196-99.

  Locomotive to Aeromotive: Octave Chanute and the Transportation Revolution; by Simine Short; : Urbana, Chicago & Springfield IL; University of Illinois Press, 2011, p. 211-24.

Chicago Days: 150 Defining Moments in the Life of a Great City; Stevenson Swanson, ed.; Wheaton IL: Cantigny First Division Foundation, 1997, p. 74.

  Proceedings of the International Conference on Aerial Navigation; Octave Chanute, ed.; New York: American Railroad and Engineer Journal, 1894, 1997; accessed 6/5/2017; also on Google Books

FlyMachines [online]; "Octave Alexandre Chanute & Augustus Moore Herring"; by Carroll Gray; accessed 2/1/2018.  "Chanute and Herring" at Flying Machines site