U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats"

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U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats"

Postby OGJ » Sat Apr 10, 2021 9:30 pm

In one month it will be the 102 anniversary of the Flight of the U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC-4 or better known as U.S. Navy's "Nancy Boats" The series took on the designation of Curtiss NC ("NC" for "Navy Curtiss")

Everyone knows about Captain John Alcock and Lieutenant Arthur Whitten Brown, in a modified Vimy IV, made the first non-stop aerial crossing of the Atlantic. They took off from Lester's Field, near St. Johns, Newfoundland on June 14, 1919, and landed June 15, 1919, at Clifden in Ireland.

But a little over one month before their historical flight U.S. Navy Curtiss NC's took off from New York City on May 8, 1919 heading for Plymouth, England. The flight was not a non-stop flight, such as Alcock & Brown's was and landed on May, 31, 1919.

Below is some reading about them, the flight, and also some some rather good old photos.

Only ten Curtiss NC aircraft were purchased during its production run.
https://www.militaryfactory.com/aircraf ... aft_id=918

LT. Comdr. A. C. Read, USN Commanding Officer on the flight of NC-4.

The Flight Across the Atlantic
Issued by the Department of Education, Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Corporation
New York City, 1919
(A 98 page booklet about the flight)

A 14:30 min. video called "The Great Flight" Curtiss NC-4 starts around: 1:20

Navy-Curtiss NC-4 Flying Boat - USA History of the flight from Rockaway, New York - Halifax, Nova Scotia - Trepassey, Newfoundland - Horta, Azores - Lisbon, Portugal - Plymouth, England,

History Detectives Episode 6, NC-4: First Across the Atlantic
http://www-tc.pbs.org/opb/historydetect ... 06_nc4.pdf

The Forgotten Fliers of 1919

First Across the Atlantic

The First Flight Across the Atlantic
https://web.archive.org/web/20080515221 ... light.html

Mine layer brings NC-4 home: New York Times, July 3, 1919
https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesm ... 287645.pdf

Developing the Navy’s NC Flying Boats: Transforming Aeronautical Engineering for the First Transatlantic Flight.
https://www.navsea.navy.mil/Portals/103 ... 0Boats.pdf

A Time for Reminiscing: Pages 12 to 17
https://www.history.navy.mil/content/da ... tion/Naval Aviation News/1960/pdf/jul69.pdf

Aircraft Photo Album Vol. 1
(Pages: 12 to 27) (Also check out "They were supposed to Fly" Pages; 31 to 34.)
https://archive.org/search.php?query=Pa ... 20Vol.%201

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Re: U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats

Postby dogsbody » Sun Apr 11, 2021 6:18 pm

Nice! Thanks for posting this, Dennis.

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Re: U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats

Postby OGJ » Mon Apr 12, 2021 4:35 pm

dogsbody wrote:Nice! Thanks for posting this, Dennis.


Thanks, glad you liked it and with that I'll add a couple more:

1919 Curtiss NC-4 Transatlantic Flight and 1939 Anniversary Flight

Fabric and metal from NC-4, First Airplane to Cross the Atlantic

The Story of NC-4

And a couple of books on this subject, for anyone who is interested.

Book #1:
Dr Richard K Smith, he is author of "First Across", the authoritative account in 1973 of the flight, and republished in 1986 by Naval Institute Press.
Hardcover: 279 pages
ISBN-10: 0870211846
ISBN-13: 978-0870211843

Book #2:
The U.S. Navy-Curtiss Flying Boat NC-4
An Account of the First Transatlantic Flight by: Richard V. Simpson
Binding: Paperback Pages: 128
ISBN: 9781625450098

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Re: U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats

Postby longshot » Mon Apr 19, 2021 10:27 pm

Thanks for all the excellent links. The Youtube about a '1939' commemorative is actually about the 1949 flight of Neptune 'The Turtle'.(US-Lisbon-overhead Plymouth UK )
There was a commemorative flight by 2 PBYs , 67 years after the NC flight ( and for the 75th anniversary of US Naval Aviation in 1986), as far as I know there was no commemorative flight in 2019, just a ground ceremony at Rockaway M West
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Re: U.S. Navy's Curtiss NC also known as Navy's "Nancy Boats

Postby seawings » Thu Apr 22, 2021 9:58 am

Cracking stuff, Dennis.

Thanks so much for this post too...!
Best Regards,

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