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MARCH 21, 1912
     The above cut is a very good likeness of Claude A. Berlin, the Centralia young man who is learning to fly at San Diego, Calif. Mr. Berlin has adopted the Curtiss type of machine and has been in California since the first of January, taking lessons from Curtiss himself. In taking the course of instruction, Mr. Berlin used three machines. The first was a 30-horse power machine and he was not allowed to leave the ground, but had to practice steering in a straight line. After a week of this, Mr. Berlin was allowed to leave terra firma and go up about ten feet and practice making a landing. Next he was given a 40-horse power machine and allowed to go up a hundred feet. After a week of this he was allowed to go up 700 feet, and at an elevation of 350 feet he had to stop his engines and glide to a mark. The machine he is now using is an 8-cylinder 60-hores power machine and he is allowed to go as high as 1000 feet. Mr. Berlin will fly for his license shortly, and after he receives this he can go as high as he wants. He says the higher up you go the better you like it. As soon as Mr. Berlin gets his license, he will return home to Centralia and make this city his headquarters. He will probably make some flights during the fair week. He has also several other flight dates in sight.
     Some time ago Mr. Berlin was in California and witnessed several automobile races. At that time he was seriously thinking of going into the auto racing business, but came home before he got the racing bug firmly in his system. For some time, however, he has been thinking of learning the flying game.
     The first inkling that his Centralia friends had of Mr. Berlin's learning the game was the account published exclusively in Saturday's Evening News-Examiner
Newsclipping from the Centralia News-Examiner, March 21, 1912
Courtesy of Karen L. Johnson


Claude A. Berlin Takes a Course of Instruction from Curtis
and is Now a Licensed Aviator.
March 16, 1912
     Claude A. Berlin, who has been in California since the first of the year has written some news that may surprise his many friends here. Mr. Berlin left Centralia for Eastern Oregon for a few days' trip., stating that he was going to visit some relatives. He was later heard from in San Diego, Calif. He wrote that he was taking a course and his friends supposed that he meant that he was tkaing a business dourse. Now comes the news that Mr. Berlin has been taking instructions from Curtis in the art of flying and will soon be a licensed aviator. There are less than 100 licensed aviators in the United States although there are more than that number experimenting.
     Mr. Berlin started in taking his lessons in aviation on the 26th day of January, this year, and expected to be through by the first of March, but was delayed by rains. He has adopted the Curtis type of machine and is under the personal direction of Curtis. Curtis has leased form Mr. Spreckles, of the Spreckles Sugar refinery, an island called North Island about two miles long by two miles wide. The island is a level ....a floor and here is where all the trial flights are made. The first week Mr. Berlin took lessons he was put into a thirty-horse machine and allowed to travel up and down the field without leaving the ground and practicing the steering part of the machine. After a week of this exerecise, Mr. Berlin was allowed to go ten feet in the air and practice the art of making a correct landing. Mr. Berlin stated that this is the hardst part of the game and is the cause of more accidents, as a bad landing is where msot of the aviators come to grief. Mr. Berlin was next given a forty-horse power machine and was allowed to go up 100 feet for the first week and after that as far as 700 feet. At an elevation of 350 feet he had to stop his engine and practice gliding to the earth where a mark was set and the aviator was to cut figure eights on the way down. Mr. Berlin is now using his last machine, which is an eight cylinder sixty-horse power affair and he is allowed to go up as high as 1000 feet. As he states in a letter to friend in town, "The higher you get up the better you like it." He says that earth looks like a map and that San Diego, which is a city of about 50,000, looks about as big as Chehalis at an elevation of 1000 feet. Mr. Berlin expects to get his license soon and as soon as he gets the license he will return to Centralia. In flying for his license, Mr. Berlin will have some difficult work to do. He will have to cut ten figure eights at a height of 100 feet and make two good landings without the use of power. Mr. Berlin will purchase a machine as soon as he is a qualified aviator. He will make is headquarters in Centralia and will try and arrange flights during the Fair week. He has several other dates for flights in sight.
     Mr. Berlin has been a resident of Centralia for several years, coming here from Raymond where he had a grocery store. Shortly after his arrival in Centralia, he purchased the grocery store from Mr. Dickerson. He has had associated with him at one time his brother, Guy Berlin, who later sold his interests to another, George Berlin, who is caring for the store while Mr. Berlin is aviating around San Diego. He is a young man who has made many friends wherever ha has gone on account of his likeable disposition. His enemies, well he has .... He is a son of Mr. and Mrs. ..... Berlin of this city.
     The accompanying cut shows Mr. Berlin in his flying machine and harness. It is a good likeness of Mr. Berlin, the aviator, formerly the grocer.
Newsclipping from the Centralia News-Examiner, March 16, 1912
Courtesy of Karen L. Johnson

MARCH 23, 1912
     Claude A. Berlin, who has been in San Diego since the fore part of January, returned home last night on the Shasta Limited from San Francisco. Mr. Berlin has been learning the flying game from Glen Crtis during his stay in California. He made 117 flights altogether and never had the slightest accident. He will try and arrange dates for flying now that he is a licensed aviator. He will probably make a flight during hte fair week. Mr. Berlin's health is much better than when he started on his trip. He has gained several pounds and looks much better.
Newsclipping from the Centralia News-Examiner, March 23, 1912
Courtesy of Karen L. Johnson

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