AERONAUTICS: Aerodynamics

Man is jealous of the birds, though he has already learned to fly many times faster. Determined to learn their secret, Leonard W. Bonney, wealthy pioneer of the air, grown middle-aged since his first flight with Orville Wright in 1910, caught two seagulls in a steel trap padded with cloth at Mastic, L. I. For three years he studied them, scrutinizing every feather on their bodies.

Finally, he designed a plane. Inspired by the gull, it looked like the gull. It was named Bonney's Gull. It was fat in body with graceful curving wings. Bonney followed the bird principle, abandoned the aileron,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!