Little Known Black History Fact: Cross Country Fliers

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  • On July 17, 1933, two pilots, Dr. Albert Forsythe and C. Alfred Anderson became the first black men to make a cross-country flight from Bader Field in Atlantic City. The men successfully made the trip without lighting or a radio, with only an altimeter and a map. They coasted to Los Angeles in their plane, which was named The Pride of Atlantic City. When the men returned, they were greeted with a parade.

    Dr. Forsythe had purchased the Pride of Atlantic City earlier that year for $2,000. After taking leave of his medical practice, he joined with Anderson and learned to fly from a white flight instructor in Philadelphia – the only place blacks could learn to fly in the country. The fact that the men learned to fly from a white instructor during a peak time of segregation made their accomplishment remarkable.

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