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ogy experts, piloted in United States Army aircraft, have successfully located Japanese beetles in New Jersey, and boll-weevil cotton areas in the South. Forestry experts in Canada, also, use planes in similar work, particularly in searching out woods infested
quires the flying habit, they will demand flying facilities. Seventy per cent. of these short passenger-flights are made by women. Among the other thirty per cent. are many men who go because they have to. On long trips the reverse is true. Women fly for the novelty, men for a
purpose. Another of the uses for aircraft is photographing for newspapers and the motionpictures, particularly the news weeklies, though there are many films where airplanes play important parts. The film world. has, in fact, developed some ‘‘dare-devil” pilots, who risk their lives in performing a great
with the spruce bud-worm. They claim that these pests can be seen from the air, better than from the ground. When one gets from under the official eagle's wings and into the field of commercial aviation in this country, he finds variety, but not great progress. According to the Manufacturers Aircraft Association there are some twelve hundred commercial planes in operation, and about three hundred and fifty operating companies. There are few passenger-service lines, most of the trips being intermittent and irregular. One firm operates seaplanes from Key West to Havana, negotiating the boatand-railtrip of thirteen hours in only seventyfive minutes. Most of the above mentioned twelve hundred planes are used for exhibition flights at country fairs, amusement parks, and for single “flips.” The aérodromes are usually some convenient pasture, and many of the machines are old army aircraft. These “gipsy” fliers, as one authority has designated them, are doing one good piece of work—they are introducing the novelty of flight to several thousand people every year' and once the public ac
many reckless feats that make the “stunts” that pilots did in their war-training appear rather tame. Advertising is now done from the air by a few firms, and political circulars and pamphlets are sometimes dropped by aircraft on the heads of unsuspecting voters. Some commercial machines carry express parcels, but reports from some of the better established companies indicate that passenger-carrying is the chief business. The average cost of a short flight is twelve dollars and a half and for flights between cities the cost per mile is
about sixty-five cents. The number of miles flown by commercial machines during 1921 will amount to about 6,250,000 miles. Crossing the Atlantic (as in the not-distant future one may be able to do within a few hours), greater airplane development will be noted in England and France, particularly in the latter country, where the Government has taken a keen interest in commercial air development, and has even granted large sums of money to companies operating on inter
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national routes. Le Bourget, the air-port of Paris, is described as a busy hive, with air expresses and freighters maintaining an “on time” schedule to London, Brussels, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Prague, Havre, many other French cities, and also to Morocco. In the cross-channel flying, alone, nearly ten thousand passengers will this year have traveled by air between Paris and London, at an average cost of twenty-five dollars each way. All passengers have been carried in safety and comfort, though the thin man has the advantage, for the total weight of passenger and baggage must not exceed two hundred pounds. Many American travelers to the Continent have availed themselves of this service, both for its speed and its novelty. British firms are also operating hundredmile-an-hour air expresses to the Continent. The London planes make connections at Amsterdam with machines which fly to Hamburg, Bremen, Berlin, Warsaw, and many points in central Europe and the Scandinavian countries. The flying-time between London and Berlin is less than twelve hours. From August, 1919, when the first international air express was undertaken between London and Paris, to the same month, in 1921, a million miles have been flown by British aircraft on this route. Mr. G. Holt Thomas, who started this service, says: The airplane is sometimes regarded as particular
ly at the mercy of the weather; but recently, when there was such a gale in the Channel that sea communications were interrupted temporarily, two high-powered air expresses duly fought their way through between Paris and London. So long as it is wind only a pilot has to contend with, and his vision is not obscured, he is already the equal of, and in some instances even superior to, transport by land and sea.
British air development in the East has been more marked and noticed than at home. The Royal Air Force has maintained its wartime aérodromes and has added new fuelingdepots, so that it is now possible to fly between Cairo and Bagdad in twelve hours— a journey that once required a month! A successful flight has been made between Cairo and Capetown (with ačrodromes prepared in advance at great cost), and of course the performance of Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith in flying from London to Australia in a twin-engined plane is well known.
England has been also the scene of the most tragic air disaster of the year—the collapse and destruction of the giant dirigible. the ZR-2, which had been built for the United States Government. The great regret, naturally, is for the loss of the brave men who manned her on the last and fatal trial trip, but there is no reason to believe that this accident, terrible as it was, will entirely halt experimentation with, and the development of, the dirigible type. These great airships, with a cruising radius of six thousand miles, are considered by many experts the best type of aircraft for air communications between the British dominions, and also for cross-continent service in the United States. Plans are under way, we are told, for the formation of a fifty million dollar company in this country to develop and operate, by 1923, dirigibles between New York and San Francisco, covering the distance in thirtysix hours.
The premiers from the British overseas dominions in session in London this last summer gave much thought to the subject of air transport, and it was their plea that deterred the British air ministry from scrapping its experimental work on airships, What the airship means to Australia, India, and South Africa is shown in this table of assumed time for ačrial journeys:
Route Airship Steamship London-Egypt 24 days 7 days London-India 5 to 6 days 19 days London—South Africa 6 to 7 days 21 days London—Australia 10 to 11 days 32 days
Germany, creator of the Zeppelin, and the pioneer twenty years ago in the construction of rigid airships, is, by the Treaty of Versailles restricted in building airships and airplanes until she has complied with that section of the peace pact which provides for handing over to the allies all air material of war type.
There is nothing in the treaty, however, which prohibits the Germans from thinking of the future. They seem to be active in making plans, and within a year from the time the allied restrictions are removed, Germany will doubtless be in the air as a commercial carrier between nations. There is a report, current abroad, that she will try for South American airtraffic, flying from Berlin by way of Spain. For this service, an airship larger than the ill-fated ZR-2 is planned.
This brief summary of ačrial activity at home and abroad points out that this country is not approaching the zenith in its development of air transportation (we may expect too much of an industry which will not become of age for three years), even though it was an American who set the world's altitude record at 40,800 feet in September. Per
haps Lieutenant MacReady tied our ačrial hopes to a star when he made that memorable climb to seven and three quarter miles, and the present readers of ST. NICHOLAS may be the generation which will develop the airways of our country. At any rate, they will be the future air-passengers, the coming pilots, and the owners, as well. The author, at St. NICHOLAS' age, flew kites. A few years later
he was firing a machine-gun, at the rate of a
or. Photograph by “Salt Lake Tribune” AIR-MAIL, PLANE LEAVING SALT LAKE CITY
thousand shots a minute, through a propeller revolving eighteen hundred times every sixty seconds, and was traveling through the air at one hundred and thirty-five miles an hour. Had he ever dreamed of such a thing when he was a boy? Hardly. There were n’t even Boy Scouts then, and he thought all wars had been fought and done for when Russia and Japan signed the peace at Portsmouth, at the invitation of President Roosevelt. Yes, in those days only time flew. Soon we all shall fly!
A new old-fashioned fairy-tale
By AGNES CADY CHITWOOD
ONCE upon a time, many long years ago, there lived in a little hut on the edge of a wood a poor widow and her only son. They were very, very poor, and the house in which they lived had only two rooms. But although they were poor, their clothes were always clean and mended, and the house neat and tidy. They both worked hard in order to get enough to eat, and, indeed, sometimes even then they were hungry. They were very generous, and it may have been on this account that at times there was not enough left for themselves. If a traveler asked for food, he was never refused. One day, Mrs. Brown packed a nice little lunch and, giving it to her son, said, “Jack, I want you to take the two largest baskets and go to the woods and pick some berries.” “All right, Mother,” he answered, “I know where there are lots of berries.” So taking his lunch and the two big baskets, he kissed his mother good-by and started for the woods. He walked and walked, but found only a few berries. Some one must have picked them at the place where he thought there were so many, for they were all gone. He kept going farther and farther into the woods, but had only about a pint of berries when it was time for him to eat his lunch. He saw a nice little stream and washed his hands in it. Then he sat on a big flat stone by the edge of the stream and opened his lunch-box. Just as he had taken the first bite out of his sandwich, a tiny little man stepped up to him and, taking off his hat, with a polite bow, said: “I wonder if you ’d have enough for me to eat. I 'm very hungry.” Now it happened that Jack had only a little lunch,-scarcely enough for himself, and he was very hungry too; but he answered with a smile on his face, “Yes, indeed; I'd be glad to share what I have with you.” Moving the lunch-box over, the little man sat down on the stone beside him. Then the two ate the lunch and, strange to say, they both had all they could possibly eat. Jack thought it tasted better than any lunch he had ever eaten. After they had finished, the wee little
man said to him, “Since you have been so kind as to give me my dinner, I’ll help you pick your berries.” So, taking the empty basket, he started running on ahead, and Jack followed him. They walked beside the stream for a short distance, then turned, following a little path that led around the edge of a big rock. Just beyond it, they came to the finest patch of the biggest berries Jack had ever seen. In a few minutes, both baskets were brimming full. “Well,” Jack exclaimed, “you certainly have helped me!” But the little man shook his head, and, putting his hand into his pocket, took out a tiny brown box and said to Jack: “No, I have n’t done enough yet to repay you for your kindness to me. Here is a gift for you.” Jack took the tiny brown box which he handed him, and thanked him for it. Then he turned it over and over in his hand and looked at it curiously, wondering what it could be. “Perhaps you think it is not worth very much,” the little man said, “but I will show you what it is. Just put it on the ground at your feet.” Jack did as he was told. Then the little man clapped his hands three times. Jack's eyes grew big as he saw what was happening, for the little box was getting larger and larger until it was as big as his mother's kitchen table. Then he saw it rising from the ground, and four legs came out from it, while two chairs appeared at the sides. The little man clapped his hands three times again. Now Jack's eyes got bigger than ever, for he saw the table set with everything good to eat that he could think of-turkey, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, ice-cream and cake, and lots of other things —a regular Christmas dinner. Suddenly Jack felt hungry. “I’ll give you something to eat this time,” the little man said. “Let’s sit down.” So they both sat down at the table and began to eat. And they ate and ate and ate, until Jack began to wonder how he was going to walk home with those two heavy baskets of berries to carry. After they had finished eating, they got up and the little man clapped his hands three times. Instantly the chairs, all the food, and the dishes disappeared. Then he clapped his hands three times again, and the table got
he had disappeared. Jack looked all around, but he was nowhere to be seen. So he put the little box very carefully in the upper pocket of his blouse, picked up his two baskets of berries, and started home. They
“SO TAKING HIs LUNCH AND THE Two BIG BASKETS, HE STARTED FOR THE WOODS”
lower and lower and smaller and smaller until there was nothing left but the tiny brown box. “Now,” said the little man, as he picked up the brown box and handed it to Jack, “there’s one condition about this box: unless you share the food with some one else, you will not be able to eat it, yourself. Remember that, and you will never go hungry.” And before Jack had time to thank him,
really did n’t seem heavy at all, and in a very short while he reached his little home. “Oh, Jack!” his mother exclaimed as she saw him coming up the path, “what a lot of berries you have, and such big ones, too!” “Yes, Mother,” he answered, “but I have something even better. Wait until suppertime and I'll surprise you.” Together they looked over the berries and