WNYC Covers Howard Hughes After He Circles the Globe in Record Time!

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WNYC covers aviator Howard Hughes and crew as they return to  New York after flying around the world July 14, 1938.

Howard Hughes wades through a scrum of reporters at Floyd Bennett Field, July 14, 1938. Hughes and his four-man crew had just returned to New York after circumnavigating the globe and covering 14,672 miles in a record-setting three days, 19 hours, 14 minutes and 10 seconds.

WNYC was there as they made their way from the plane to the ticker-tape parade, and a special City Hall reception the following day. The parade from the Battery to City Hall broke all previous records, with an estimated 1.5 million well-wishers on the street and another half million watching from office windows and rooftops. At City Hall, Hughes was modest before the thousands of well-wishers and those listening at home.

"I am not very good at making speeches, and I have consented to make this one only because there is one thing about this flight that I would like everyone to know. It was in no way a stunt. I was the carrying out of a careful plan and it functioned because it was carefully planned. We who did it are entitled to no particular credit. We are no supermen or anything of that sort. Any one of the airline pilots of this nation, with any of the trained army or navy navigators and competent radio engineers in any one of our modern passenger transports, could have done this same thing...If any credit is due anyone, it is the men who designed and perfected, to its remarkable state of efficiency, the modern American flying machine and equipment. If we made a fast flight, it is because many young men in this country went to engineering schools, worked hard at drafting tables and designed a fast airplane and navigation and radio equipment which would keep this plane upon its course. All we did was operate this equipment and the plane according to the instruction book..."


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