Transport: Clipper Down

The U. S. Army freight transport Meigs zigzagged all night in a light rain, sending up flares and fingering the dark water with her searchlights. Late the next afternoon, 400 miles east of San Bernardino Strait in the Philippines, she came upon a vast patch of gasoline and oil, like rainbow-tinted gossamer rising and falling on the Pacific swells. She radioed her discovery to Manila. Airmen guessed that under the oil patch, in 5,000 fathoms, were 15 dead men and a handsome $450,000 airplane, the Hawaii Clipper.

The Clipper could have dropped the oil...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

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