AKA Capt. Ralph E. McMillen

>Ralph E. McMillen
Ralph E. McMillen
These photographs came out of an album page entitled
Aviator McMillen at the first aeroplane flight to take place
at Canton Fairgrounds Illinois in 1914
Collection of Jerry Blanchard, 9-9-09

>Ralph E. McMillen
The Spectators
Collection of Jerry Blanchard, 9-9-09

>Ralph E. McMillen
Ready to Takeoff
Collection of Jerry Blanchard, 9-9-09

>Ralph E. McMillen
Ralph E. McMillen & his wife Wanda
Collection of Jerry Blanchard, 9-9-09

     If you search for "Ralph E. McMillen", using the Google search engine,
(9-11-09), you will find about ten links, most of them referring to his activities in the National Guard.
Nebraska National Guard
     The followning extract from the website is relevant.

     "Nebraska’s experience was apparently typical. The state’s experiment with military aviation began in 1913 when members of its signal corps branch assembled a Curtiss Model D biplane. The plane probably par- ticipated in the branch’s annual encampment that year but there was no official recogni- tion of aviation’s existence in the Nebraska Guard. Formal acknowledgement came on July 15, 1915, when the state issued an order organizing its aviation corps. Capt. Castle W. Schaffer was assigned as its chief.
     A little later, he was joined by Ralph E. McMillen, a qualified pilot. Each of the officers provided their own airplane. To raise money for the aviation branch, the governor “decided that the aviators should give exhibitions at county fairs and other public gatherings to supplement the very small funds that could be made available from the state."


Nebraska Guard Roots
     You will find a nice photograph of McMillen on this pdf file. You can scroll down to the second page and then enlarge it. He is not mentioned in the text of the article.
     You can access the site by clicking on the title above.

Ralph E. McMillen, (wife Wanda), was listed in the 1930 Census.
He was living in Leavanworth, Kansas at the time.

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

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