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Handwritten postcard with Santos Dumont's 14-Bis (1906)

Handwritten postcard with Santos Dumont's 14-Bis (1906)

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In 1906, a probable witness to the historic flights of the 14-Bis sends a postcard to his uncles.

Postcard written by an anonymous person representing Alberto Santos Dumont's historic flight with the 14-Bis on October 23, 1906. ~ 10 cm x 8 cm. Paris, December 27, 1906. Excellent condition. Single piece.

A postcard from an airplane in 1906 is like a postcard showing a computer in 1975 or a postcard showing an electric car in 2019. It's History with a big H. Disclaimer: Neither the sender nor the recipient of this postcard are historical figures. They are perfect strangers.

However, on December 27, 1906, the Parisian writing to his uncles to wish them a Happy New Year probably somehow witnessed, a little over a month earlier, the audacious Brazilian Santos Dumont (1873-1932) performing two historic flights in his famous 14-Bis, represented by the postcard.

The 14-Bis was a duck-type biplane (tail in front), designed and built in France by Brazilian aviation pioneer Alberto Santos-Dumont. On October 24 and November 12, 1906, near the Bagatelle park in Paris, Santos-Dumont performed two completely autonomous flights of a “heavier-than-air” aircraft. It crossed distances of 60 meters in October and 220 meters in November. This second flight allowed him to conquer three world records at the same time, under the control of the Aéro-Club de France.

I just kept imagining this Parisian watching these historic flights, the first in front of an audience... I found it moving.

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