In the 1920s and ‘30s, aviation didn’t have the long, rich history to look back upon, to become nostalgic over, that we have today. Rather, the aeroplane represented a look forward. A fascination with the shiny new future of sky travel gripped much of popular America, and just about any time one of these fancy and remarkable new machines alighted in a field outside of a small town, people rushed out to see it.
Coincidently, it was a new era in photography, as well. Thanks to Kodak, cameras were no longer the realm of the professional studio or itinerant photographer, they were becoming a popular way that ordinary people could record what they found exciting around them, and the snapshot was born. And of course, the new aeroplanes often fit that bill.
Often without realizing the full aspect of it, the photographers taking such casually-shot images recorded moments in history that were often missed by others. As a result, now 70 to 80 years later, we have a hidden treasure in vintage non-professional snapshots, a window back through which we can clearly see the excitement that flying machines brought. Vintage Air will be taking just such a look back – and discover some surprising threads of history – mostly utilizing never-before-published photos from the MojaveWest Vintage Photograph Archive as well as other collections.