Joe Ratzenberger, January 1936


I, Joe Ratzenberger, reslding at 195 Princeton Street, Bridgeport, Connecticut, declare the following to be fact. to the beat of Biy knowledge

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I remember very well one of the early planes conttructed by Oo»ta»e Whitehead (Illustrated by Hot. 2; Z-A| St-tfZ-C], comtructed In hie ahop on Cherry Street, back of Hancock Avenue. I recall a time, which' I think

as probably July or Aueuat of 1901 or 1902, when this plane wai atarted In flight on the lot between Fine and Cherry Streets, The plane flew at a height of about twelve feet from the ground, I should judge, and travelled the diatance to'BostwIck Avenue before It cane to the ground. I recall the Incident very well because I was one of severs! boys who clung to the back of the plane ae It rose Into the air and carried us oft our ieet until

were driven away by some of the men working with Gustave Whitehead. This plane bad folding wings constructed on bamboo poles. I know that It had a motor In It for I recall the noise that It r-ade. It was a boat shaped plane and travelled on the ground oa wheels.

I recall other planes constructed by Gustave Whitehaad which he tested by attaching them to a stake In his yard and letting the motor drive them so that they were kept going about In a circle.

I did not see a flight that was made at Black Rock, but recall very 'ell having been told about the flight and that the plane landed In the'

water. The boys of our crowd flocked out to Sandy Beach to see It but It w« not taken up again on that particular day.