Smithsonian National Air and Space MuseumPioneers of Flight

The 1920s and 1930s were formative decades in aviation on many levels. Flight technology rapidly advanced, military and civilian aviation grew tremendously, record-setting and racing captured headlines and public interest, and African Americans began to breach the social barriers of flight. The interwar period also witnessed the birth of modern rocketry.

The Barron Hilton Pioneers of Flight Gallery highlights this exciting era with an eclectic collection of aircraft and other objects. A common theme unites them. All are connected with people who pushed the existing technological or social limits of flight during the early decades of the 20th century. Each aircraft or exhibit represents an unprecedented feat, a barrier overcome, a pioneering step.

This website provides brief highlights from four main sections of the exhibition on display at the National Mall Building in Washington, DC. A full online exhibition is yet to come.

Activities | Exhibition Summary | Plan A Visit

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