On May 19, 2022, a dozen people from across Springfield boarded the 93-year-old reconditioned Ford Tri-Motor 5-AT-B airplane at Springfield Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport. The 1200 horsepower plane first flew in 1928. Affectionately known as the “Tin Goose” the first luxury airliner, the Ford Tri-Motor redefined world travel and marked the beginning of commercial flight, it was the largest civilian passenger aircraft of its time. It was pretty exciting for me to get an up-close and personal look at the Ford Tri-Motor. Most planes at the time still relied on wood, Ford’s planes used metal exterior and wood on the interior trim. The airplane had 3 engines, each putting out over 400 supercharged horsepower.
With engines roaring and propellors spinning, the Ford Tri-Motor took flight, giving passengers a bird’s-eye view of downtown Springfield and Lake Springfield. I really enjoyed the 15 minutes ride over the sky in Springfield. The “City of Wichita” the aircraft’s official title, is one of fewer than 200 Ford Tri-Motors built from 1926-1933, making it the world’s first mass-produced airliner.
The Experimental Aircraft Association organized a series of flights in Springfield on the historic plane for interested people to experience a flight and see the state capitol and Lake Springfield from the sky.
Sangamon Watch Company is launching a new aviation watch collection “The First Flight” end of this year, make sure you bookmark this blog to receive future updates.