Hilder F. Smith

Flew Passengers out of "Bean Field"

     Recollection of early flying days are contained in a letter from Mrs. Hilder F. Smith of Santee, Calif. She writes, in part:
     "I could not locate Floyd's field book with data on all pupils (flying time, etc.) but I did find a clipping from Aerial Age (no date) which says: 'Mrs. Hilder Smith is making excellent progress and has started making turns, handling the machine alone. On the ground she handles the school plane almost as well as she drives her car with other students coming and going from the field.'
     Another clipping relates: "Lieut. Ned Godier of the U. S. Army Aero Squad at San Diego acted as the Aero Club official. Glenn Martin, Floyd Smith and Mrs. Hilder Smith and a number of friends of the two graduates witnessed the trials."
     Mrs. Smith continues: "I flew Glenn's first tractor, Gnome 50 h.p., the summer of 1914 before Floyd took it out on looping dates, and in 1915-16 flew Martin TT, 90 OX. I was the first woman to fly passengers out of the bean field (Martin Flying School) which is now the International Airport in Los Angeles."
From The Early Birds of Aviation CHIRP
July 1961, Number 66

Hilder F. Smith
       Hilder Smith died in 1976. She is buried under the dome of The Portal of the Folded Wings located in Burbank, California, along with her husband Floyd and eleven other pioneer flyers including Bertram B. Acosta, Walter R. Brookins, Mark M. Campbell, Col. Warren S Eaton, W. Bertrum Kinner, A. Roy Knabenshue, Elizabeth McQueen, John B. Moisant, Matilde Moisant, Carl B. Squier and Charles E. Taylor.
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