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Since the dream of flight was finally realized by two Ohioans, Wilbur and Orville Wright, it is little wonder that Greater Clevelanders were quick to embrace it. From the August day in 1910 when Glenn Curtiss flew from Euclid Beach Park to Cedar Point, aviation has had a strong following in Cleveland. World War I saw the dawn of aircraft production in the city, and the 1920s brought the world-renowned Cleveland National Air Races. Cleveland industry supported aviation in many different ways, and multiple airports, many now long gone, promoted business aviation and flight training for decades. During World War II, Cleveland was a center of war production, and much of this was aviation related. Subsequently, renovations of the Cleveland Municipal Airport created Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. A scene of thriving airline operations to this day, Cleveland’s business community was quick to appreciate the advantages of corporate aviation, which remains a daily feature of Cleveland’s aviation life.
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About the Author
Thomas G. Matowitz Jr., a licensed pilot and author of Cleveland’s National Air Races, has been fascinated by Cleveland’s aviation history since childhood. He was inspired by his grandfather George K. Scott, who learned how to fly in Cleveland in a Waco 9 in 1928 and remained an active pilot for 45 years.