Douglas World Cruiser "Chicago" (23-1230)



Chicago. Douglas World Cruiser #2 with Original Fabric on the print. Signed by: Pilot of the "Boston" Leigh Wade The Douglas World Cruiser (DWC) was developed to meet a requirement from the United States Army Air Service for an aircraft suitable for an attempt at the first flight around the world. The Douglas Aircraft Company responded with a modified variant of their DT torpedo bomber, the DWC. Five aircraft were ordered for the round-the-world flight, one for testing and training and four for the actual expedition. The success of the World Cruiser bolstered the international reputation of the Douglas Aircraft Company. The design of the DWC was later modified to create the O-5 observation aircraft, which was operated by the Army Air Service. The flight arrived in Paris on Bastille Day, 14 July. From Paris the aircraft flew to London and on to the north of England in order to prepare for the Atlantic Ocean crossing. On 3 August 1924, while flying across the Atlantic, Boston was forced down. The Chicago was able to contact a navy destroyer and dropped a note about the troubled aircraft, tied to the Chicago's only life preserver.While being towed by the U.S. Navy light cruiser USS Richmond that had picked up the crew, the Boston capsized and sank. The Chicago with Lt. Lowell Smith and 1st Lt. Leslie Arnold still in the lead, and the New Orleans, with Lt. Erik Nelson and Lt. Jack Harding, continued and crossed the Atlantic via Iceland and Greenland and reached Canada.The original prototype, now named Boston II, reunited with the Boston's crew, Lt. Leigh Wade (pilot) and SSgt. Henry Ogden,met them in Pictou, Nova Scotia, and the three aircraft flew on to Washington DC.After a hero's welcome in the capital, the three Douglas World Cruisers flew to the West Coast, on a multi-city tour, stopping briefly in Santa Monica and finally landing in Seattle on 28 September 1924. Douglas World Cruiser Chicago (23-1230) equipped with floats

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