Lilienthal-Type Machine

On 22 June 1896, Chanute, his son Charles, partners Augustus Herring and William Avery and the two family dogs (Rags and Tatters), took flying equipment on the train to Miller Station, now an eastern suburb of Gary, IN. They then carried all equipment and gear two miles to the southern shore of Lake Michigan.

Here, Herring’s rebuilt Lilienthal-type machine was tried first, “so that the known could be tested before passing to the unknown”. It proved very difficult to balance in the air and “cranky.” After a bad landing, the machine was discarded.

A man being pulled up by a large kite-like machine.
"Mr. Herring’s Flight with the improved Lillienthal Soaring Machine"

Chicago Record, 29 June 1896.

A large flying machine with sails sits on a beach.
1896 Chanute multi-plane soaring machine, 6th form

Courtesy of the Octave Chanute Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Illustration of an old-fashioned, wood-and-canvas airplane flies over a beach.
Octave Chanute’s Aerocurve being tested at Dune Park, Indiana

Chicago Record, 28 September 1896.

Men watch a plane lfy through the air.
Photo taken on September 1896 of the Chanute camp near Dune Park, Gary, IN

Courtesy of the Octave Chanute Papers, Manuscript DivisionLibrary of Congress, Washington, D.C.

From left to right: unknown, Augustus Moore Herring, Octave Chanute, Henry S. Bunting (Chicago Tribune reporter), William Paul Butusov, two more Chicago newspaper reporters (possibly Mr. Manley-Chicago Record, Mr. Macbeth-Chicago Times-Herald). The circus tent in the background was used for sleeping quarters for everyone.