AKA William Kabitzke
J. William Kabitzke
J. William Kabitzke
from a photo showing
Group of Early Bird flyers
n front of Wright Memorial
August, 1940
Collection of Wright State University

John C. Henning
Group of Early Bird flyers
in front of Wright Memorial
August, 1940
From left to right, 1st row: J. William Kabitzke, Orville Wright, Charles Wald,
2nd row: Walter Brookins (partially seen:, Roderick M. Wright, John C. Henning, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Bernard L. Whelan, C. Albert Elton, Robert G. Fowler.
In the center at rear, George A. Gray.
Collection of Wright State University


The Daily Journal and Tribune,
Knoxville, Tennessee: October 5, 1912,
Transcribed by Bob Davis - 6-11-04
"Aeronaut (Aviator) Fell 2,200 Feet and Escaped with Only a Few Scratches - His Machine was Demolished"
"Washington, Oct. 4. - Falling in an aeroplane from more than 2,200 feet in the air and escaping with only a few scratches, was the remarkable experience of William Kabitzske, a professional aviator for the Wright company at the army aviation school at College Park, Md., today. Kabitzske was attempting to complete a 2-hour engine endurance test, and had flown thirty-four minutes when the engine suddenly stopped and the aeroplane started a rapid descent. The aeroplane was demolished."
Bob Davis

     NO ONE can really say one reunion is any more fun than another. There are bound to be variations, scheduled and unscheduled. As usual, of course, there could be seen any time during the races a bunch of check-capped Early Birds out in front of everything, talking over the field mike, pinch-hitting on national hookups or just gassing away with fellow celebrities. There was the annual meeting at the Statler when all the EBs at the races got together at one and the same time, and the Tichenor dinner and EB guest Charlie Taylor, the world's No. 1 airplane and engine artisan.
     September 3, 4 and 5, 1938, were big days for several early birds who had just discovered the Early Birds and had made themselves and their desire for association known. And for everyone it was great to see old friends again or actually meet, perhaps for the first time, those personages who were names in the golden days, and to realize that the most of them are still right along in the forefront as of yore though, doubtless, on a little more solid footing.
     Morning and evening of every day found groups of earnest "confabbers" in session in the Early Bird headquarters in the Statler.
     On September 3, a delegation of Early Birds---Augustus Post, Horace B. Tuttle, Horace B. Willis, Sidney Veit, A. P. Warner and Ernest Jones---laid a wreath on the grave of Ambassador Herrick
     On the morning of September 4, was held the annual meeting of officers.
     On the evening of the same day, 80 some odd members and their guests attended the dinner. The Early Birds' Saint Tichenor was again the host. The newly re-elected "Jack" Vilas was in the chair
     Certificates of membership were handed to most lately elected members Ralph H. Upson, C. Murvin Wood and J. William Kabitzke, who were called on for personal angles on their past performances. Colonel T. DeW. Milling was greeted after many years of sojourn in Fitzsimmons Hospital and recovery time. There was Colonel A. R. Christie, JMA of July 3, 1915, and Hilder (Mrs. J. Floyd) Smith---the only woman Early Bird present---told the audience her views on pioneer flying and jumping. Charles E. Taylor, builder of the gliders and planes, engines and what not of the Wright brothers and of the Wright Company, stood a barrage of questions upon the conclusion of his anecdotes. James V. "Jimmie" Piersol told of his conferences and negotiations which resulted in the transplanting of the Wright workshop and homestead from Dayton to Greenfield Village. And on around the table went the call from Toastmaster "Bud" Morriss for the facts of life from the Early Birds present.
     The Early Birds as a whole were again guests of the Rexes at the Bunny Hutch. Mrs. Peggy Rex was at EB headquarters bright and early the first day to make sure, and one notices that absentees were few.
     Monday was another day at the races for the Early Birds---guests, as usual, of Manager Phil Henderson; and now, there's this year's races and reunion to look forward to.
courtesy of Steve Remington - CollectAir

     Since the last Chirp 11 more have entered the sacred portals and still others are suffering microscopic examination by the membership committee. Messrs. Kabitzke, Upson and Wood were on hand at the air race reunion and dinner. The following were endorsed by the committee and approved by the trustees as of August 24, 1938;
     J. William Kabitzke was still another Wright pilot, graduating at the Wright school, Dayton, May 29, 1912, in a Wright B, with Aero Club certificate No. 126. He was in charge of the Wright school 1912-1913.
courtesy of Steve Remington - CollectAir

J. William Kabitzke died in 1944
From The Early Birds of Aviation
Roster of Members
January 1, 1993

Editor's Note:
If you have any information on this Early Bird,
please contact me.
E-mail to Ralph Cooper

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