Historical Firsts This Month in....

June 1, 2013

1919—First nonstop transatlantic flight. Capt. John Alcock and Lt. Arthur Whitten Brown, British World War I flyers, made the 1,900-mile trip from St. John's, Newfoundland, to Clifden, Ireland, in 16 hr., 12 min. in a Vickers-Vimy bomber with two 350-horsepower Rolls-Royce engines (June 15–16).

1921—First U.S. black female pilot. Bessie Coleman received license June 15.

Gossamer Albatross1979—First man-powered aircraft to fly across the English Channel. The Kremer Prize for the Channel crossing was won by Bryan Allen, who flew the Gossamer Albatross from Folkestone, England, to Cap Gris-Nez, France, in 2 hr., 55 min. (June 12).

2002—First solo nonstop round-the-world balloon flight. Steve Fossett flew from Northam, West Australia, to Lake Yamma Yamma, Queensland, Australia, landing after 14 days, 19 hrs. He broke three balloon records along the way: fastest time around the world, measured by crossing 117° East longitude (13 days, 3 min.), longest distance flown solo (20,483.25 mi; 32,963.35 km), and longest time flown solo (355 hrs., 50 min.) (June 19–July 3).