Date Published: 
Edition: 1st Edition
IMPORTANT HISTORICAL COLLECTION WITH BALDWIN PROVENANCE
Collection of 11 glass plate photos circa 1908, (plates measure 81mm x 100mm) in this collection with all in fine condition except "June Bug" with two cracks. They are housed in their original purpose built box with a leather strap and brass bands and each slide in a small white envelope . These standard 3.25 x 4 inch glass-mounted lantern slides had likely been used as lecture slides by Alexander Graham Bell’s Aerial Experiment Association group with some slides having applied labels with sequence numbers. Consequently all would be circa 1908 copy photographs rather than originals. These slides are from the estate of the first British subject to fly in a heavier than air powered aircraft, Casey Baldwin and stayed in his family (grandson) until 1995.
A very important historical collection with superb Baldwin provenance. Accompanied by a letter of provenance note signed in 1995 by Casey Baldwin's grandson. Interesting to note that the famous Upper Canadian lawyer and reform leader, Robert Baldwin (1804-1858) is the grandfather of Casey (Fredrick Walker) Baldwin.
List and some details on the 11 glass slides in collection;
1. “Aerial Experiment Association”. Depicts from left to right J.A.D.McCurdy, T.E.Selfridge, A.G.Bell, F.W.Baldwin, and C.Curtis standing at the Point at Beinn Breagh, Alexander Graham Bell’s Estate at Baddeck. Beinn Breagh served as the Headquarters of the Association for most of its life although during the winter operations were transferred to Hammondsport, New York because the weather was more clement, it was close to Glen Curtiss’ engine workshop, and there was a good field for test flights.
2. “The HD-4”. This would be the “Hyrdodrome 4” which was a high speed hydrofoil which Bell designed and built and which set a world speed record on water (70 mph) in 1918 which stood for over a decade. The HD series was meant original to pursue subs during World War I but was not put into production. Also of note: Bell tested his airplane engines in the early period by mounting them on pontoon/hydrofoils and running them on water or ice.
3. Unnumbered and untitled but on the envelope in the hand of Casey Baldwin’s grandson: “Beinn Breagh Harbour Looking North. Bell Lab Buildings on beach.” This is the Bell laboratory in Nova Scotia.
4. Unnumbered and untitled but on the envelope in the hand of Casey Baldwin’s grandson it says “wreck of the ‘Red Wing’ AEA’s 1st plane in which Casey Baldwin became the first Canadian to fly-March, 1908 in upstate New York.”
5. “The Wright Brothers Gliding Machine” On a National Geographic Society mount. Some text shows above and below the image apparently because this negative was used in producing a publication. NOTE—this could be of great interest, as the Wrights did not have a glider as late as 1908.
10. “Dr.Bell’s Man Lifting Kite. The Manhole.” On a National Geographic Society mount bearing the title “Dr.Bell’s Man-Lifting Kite” in the negative, again as if it had been used for publication. This image shows the kite (a tetrahedron) from the inside looking out and is an extraordinary image.
12. "The Silver Dart“(see pages 22 and 23 of the BULLETIN OF THE A.E.A. for March 22, 1909”). On the envelope in the hand of Casey Baldwin’s grandson it says “ Silver Dart on ice at Baddeck Bay. McCurdy at the controls, Baldwin behind. First Passenger Flight in the British Empire.”
13. “The Wreck “and something else inscribed in negative which is unclear.
14. “Drome No.I. Selfridge’s ‘RED WING’ at Hammondsport , New York March 9, 1908”. On a National Geographic Society mount. On the envelope in the hand of Casey Baldwin’s grandson it says “”Red Wing.” AEA’s First Aircraft in which Baldwin became the 1st Canadian to fly March 12, 1908. McCurdy later flew in Canada.”(Drome refers to aerodrome, the term used at that time for aircraft.)
15. "Drome No.2 Baldwin’s White Wing at Hammondsport, N.Y., May 14, 1908. ”. On a National Geographic Society mount
16. “Drome No. 3.Curtiss” JUNE BUG” at Hammondsport, N.Y.. June 21, 1908.” On a National Geographic Society mount. Shows two cracks in the plate.
“In the history of effective flying the [Bell’s Aerial Experiment] Association ranks in precedence next to the Wright Brothers.” (Parkin, Bell and Baldwin, p.41). Includes the Glass Plate Photographs of The “Red Wing” (The FIRST Successful Public Demonstration of an Airplane in North America) The “White Wing” FIRST Airplane equipped with Ailerons and 3-wheel landing gear “June Bug” FIRST Airplane to fly a Kilometer in public and winner of the first Scientific American Air Prize. The Wright Glider 1908
These rare glass plates come from the earliest period of powered, heavier than air flight, from the aerial laboratory of an under-appreciated and highly significant early aviation pioneer, Alexander Graham Bell.
Fine. Item #3443