Round-the-World Flights

Howard Hughes Round-the-World Flight

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Flown Cover Special Cachet Hughes Autograph Letter City/Country Cachet
Pix #1 Pix #2 Pix #3 Pix #4 Pix #5

        Many remember Howard Hughes in the last years of his life, when his mind had faded and he lived the life of a wealthy paranoid recluse. Earlier in his life, Hughes was a dashing and innovative businessman who had inherited the Hughes Tool Company when he was 19. Thereafter, Hughes became a Hollywood movie producer, aircraft inventor, mining mogul, casino owner and ladies' man.
        Howard Hughes was an avid and daring pilot setting a handful of aviation world records, including one for his 1938 flight round-the-world in just over 91 hours. Hughes with his flight crew of Harry Connor (co-pilot), Thomas Thurlow (navigator), Edward Lund (flight engineer), and Richard Stoddard (radio operator) made this noteworthy flight. They were assisted by Al Lodwick, vice president of Curtis-Wright who handled flight operation & clearances, landing permits and enroute fuel provisioning. On July 10, 1938 Hughes and crew departed Floyd Bennett Field, Long Island New York and flew round-the-world in a Lockheed 14 Lodestar Monoplane with the primary sponsoring of the New York World's Fair for which Hughes was an aeronautical advisor.
        They were guided by the most reassuring set of flying gadgets ever packed into a private airplane including a homing radio compass to keep them on course by taking bearings from ships at sea, a new periscopic drift indicator, a gyro-pilot which did most of the flying and a powerful radio transmitter which radio linked them to a towering trylon antenna at the New York World's Fair. The purpose of the Hughes' round-the-world flight was for publicity to bid foreigners to come to visit the New York World's Fair.
        On July 14, 1938 Howard Hughes and his four-man crew returned to New York after circling the globe covering 14,672 miles in three days, nineteen hours, fourteen minutes and ten seconds. They were treated to a special Mayorial reception and ticker-tape parade in New York City. Hughes died in 1976 while a passenger of a flight from Los Angeles to Houston.
        After the flight, Hughes said in a prepared statement,
        "There is one thing about this flight that I would like everyone to know. It was in no way a stunt. It was the carrying out of a careful plan."......
        "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." ......
        All we did was operate this equipment and the plane according to the instruction book....."

        Pictured above is a flown flight cover that was carried from New York Round-the-World back to New York. It was postmarked in New York, NY on July 10th, Le Bourget Airport, Paris France on July 11th and backstamped in New York on July 14, 1938. A Russian stamp was affixed commemorating landings in Moscow, Omsk and Yakutsk.


Departed Floyd Bennett Field, Long Island New York         Sunday,    July 10, 1938 at  7:20 PM
                                    3,641 miles in 16H 38M                      
         LeBourget Field, Paris France                     Monday,    July 11, 1938 at 11:58 AM
                                    1,640 miles in  7H 51M  
         Moscow, Russia                                    Tuedsay,   July 12, 1938 at  4:15 AM 
                                    1,400 miles in  7H 27M
         Omsk, Russia                                      Tuesday,   July 12, 1938 at  2:00 PM
                                    2,158 miles in 10H 31M 
         Yakutsh, Russia                                   Wednesday, July 13, 1938 at  5:08 AM		
                                    2,457 miles in 12H 17M 
         Fairbanks, Alaska                                 Wednesday, July 13, 1938 at  8:18 PM
                                    2,441 miles in 12H  2M 
         Minneapolis, MN                                   Thursday,  July 14, 1938 at  9:38 AM
                                    1,054 miles in  4H 26M
Arrived Floyd Bennett Field, Long Island New York          Thursday,  July 14, 1938 at  2:34 PM

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