Plainville, CT. – March 8, 1919

Plainville, Connecticut – March 8, 1919

     On March 8, 1919, aviator Hugh Rockwell, and John H. Trumbull, left New York in Rockwell’s two-passenger aircraft after attending an airplane show.  Within thirty minutes (Traveling at 100 mph), the pair was 8,000 feet over Plainville where Trumbull lived.  There Rockwell performed a series of stunts before landing.  Rockwell had hoped to land on Trumbull’s property, but as he was about to touch down, a gust of wind forced the tail to drop and hit the ground, then bounce up, and send the front of the plane plowing into the ground approximately 50 feet from Trumbull’s house. 

     The aircraft was wrecked. Both men were shaken up, but neither was seriously hurt. 

     This was reported buy the Hartford Courant newspaper to be the first airplane crash to occur in Plainville.  (Another would occur on June 23, 1919.) 

     This was Trumbull’s second flight in an airplane, and the accident didn’t deter him from future flights.  In fact, John Trumbull later became governor of the State of Connecticut, and at the age of 53 obtained his pilot’s license, the first governor in the country to do so.   He became known as the “Flying Governor”.     


     Hartford Courant, “Airplane Wrecked In Plainville Fall”, March 9, 1919




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