YORK – History buffs had the opportunity to fly back in time. The 1929 Ford Tri-Motor made a pit stop in York Friday through Sunday.
The 89-year-old plane was the largest all-metal civilian passenger aircraft of its time. Cody Welch, a 26th year pilot of the “Little Ford”, said it’s a way for the public to step back in time…
Henry Ford mobilized millions of Americans and created a new market with his Model T “Tin Lizzie” automobile from 1909 to 1926. After World War I, he recognized the potential for mass air transportation. Ford’s Tri-Motor aircraft, nicknamed the “Tin Goose,” was designed to build another new market: airline travel. To overcome concerns of engine reliability, Ford specified three engines and added features for passenger comfort, such as an enclosed cabin. The first three Tri-Motors built seated the pilot in an open cockpit, as many pilots doubted a plane could be flown without the direct “feel of the wind.”
Welch says the Tri-Motor set the standard in passenger aviation…
The plane then went on to serve a short stint in Hollywood, starring in movies like Jerry Lewis’s “Family Jewels” and Johnny Depp’s “Public Enemies”. Neil Armstrong, John Travolta and John Denver were also known to fly the legendary aircraft.
You can become a part of history and fly on the plane this weekend at the York Municipal Airport. Rides are available to the public Saturday, and Sunday from 9am to 5pm. Adults are $70 in advance and $75 for walk-up. Children 17 and under are $50.
The “Tin Goose” is brought to communities across the United States by EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) chapters. The York Chapter 1055 was instrumental in bringing the plane to York.
Below are two videos of the Ford Tri-Motor taking off from the York Municipal Airport.