The City of Murfreesboro Municipal Airport will host a wonderful piece of aviation history this weekend with the arrival of the City of Wichita, a Ford 4-AT-E Tri-motor. The aircraft, known as the first luxury airliner, made its first flight on June 11,1926.
“We’re very excited to help showcase the City of Wichita at Murfreesboro Municipal Airport,” said City Airport Director Chad Gehrke. “Hosting aviation history like the Wichita this weekend and the Flagship Detroit DC-3 last April, provides citizens and aviation enthusiasts with an up-close and personal experience in the development of aircraft science and technology.”
The Tri-motor’s first flight in 1926 came less than 23 years after the Wright Brothers first successful flight of a powered aircraft, Dec. 17, 1903. The Ford A-AT-E Tri-motor will be on display at the Murfreesboro Municipal Airport Thursday Nov. 9 at 7:00 p.m. through SundayNov. 12. The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) sponsors the Ford Trimotor and flies the aircraft throughout the country, offering tickets to ride the plane www.flytheford.org.
“The amazing thing to me is when you get up into the aircraft where the passengers sit and into the cockpit you are able to see how aviation technology was rapidly evolving,” added Gehrke. “You can actually see where some of the aircraft’s engine instruments and indicators are out on the engine.”
In the DC-3, instruments were moved inside on the aircraft dashboard rather than out on the engine. In addition, the Ford Trimotor did not have the smooth, sleek-looking metal of contemporary aircraft. Most aircraft today is manufactured with composite materials. The Ford Trimotor enables visitors to step back in time for a first-hand glimpse of early aviation technology and see how far the industry has come. In less than 50 years, aviation developed from Kitty Hawk to jet aircraft in what is known as the “golden era.”
For more information about the Ford Tri-motor, visit https://www.eaa.org/en/eaa/flight-experiences/fly-the-ford-eaa-ford-tri-motor-airplane-tour or call 877-952-5395.