Describing him as a "little French king of the air," the Los Angeles Herald was ecstatic over Hubert Latham's airborne duck hunt over the Bolsa Chica wetlands and beach. (See our first mention of Hubert Latham at Welcome to the peatlands: farmers, preachers, tycoons, oilmen and outlaws, http://historicwintersburg.blogspot.com/2012/03/welcome-to-peatlands-farmers-preachers.html)
Latham, flew to Bolsa Chica from the Dominguez Aero Park (present day Carson, California), "coming out of the east like a great winged monster that even the birds had not dreamed of, the man invaded the sacred domain of all winged creatures---the ocean---and sailing out over its blue expanse he flew...between great flocks of birds, at times flying faster than they, and to show that his mastery over them was complete he picked one from the air with a rifle shot, while his chugging terror-inspiring craft traveled at fifty miles an hour."
Left: Hubert Latham, circa 1910, the year of his infamous flight over the Bolsa Chica. Photo, Library of Congress
The Los Angeles Herald reports on Hubert Latham's duck hunt over the Bolsa Chica in his Antoinette monoplane, December 23, 1910. (Library of Congress, Chronicling America)
About the ducks, Latham commented, "ordinarily they travel about fifty miles an hour, but when they are being chased, they go faster than this...I would have no trouble in overtaking them, for they tire and the machine does not." Latham's only concern was that the birds would damage his plane.
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