Wings: A History of Aviation from Kites to the Space Age

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W. W. Norton & Company, 2004 - History - 725 pages
3 Reviews
The invention of the airplane ushered in the modern age a new era of global commerce, revolutionary technologies, and total war. Whatever the practical consequences, the sheer exhilaration of flight captured the imagination. No longer bound to the surface of the earth, humans took the first steps on a journey that would eventually carry them to other worlds. Tom Crouch weaves the people, machines, and ideas of the air age into a compelling narrative. He tells how the enthusiasm of amateurs spawned an industry that determined the rise and fall of nations. Yet this is not a tale of unalloyed progress. Moments of exaltation were tempered by bitter disappointment and stark terror. Blind alleys were the price of technical progress. In the end, there is no more fascinating cast of characters than those who wrote history in the sky. Theirs is a fascinating story of realizing an extraordinary dream and riding it."
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DoingDewey - LibraryThing

If you ever had a question about the history of flight, this book has the answer. Spanning the entire twentieth century and then some, Wings also crosses the globe, covering major advancements made by ... Read full review

Wings: a history of aviation from kites to the space age

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Describing the development of aviation as a "punctuated equilibrium" process that resembles Stephen J. Gould's evolutionary mode, Crouch (senior curator, U.S. National Air & Space Museum ... Read full review

Contents

Well Ned Its Wonderful
3
Foundation Stones
19
Talking to the Air
54
The World Takes Wing 19041909
85
From Experiment to Industry 19091914
119
Into the Fight The Airplane at War 19141918
151
Laying the Foundation 19191927
195
Big Business 19271935
239
Toward New Horizons
443
From Aviation to Aerospace 19452003
487
Cold War Hot War
537
A World in the Air 19452003
592
Conclusion
633
Glossary
641
Notes
649
Bibliography
677

The Roar of the Crowd 19271939
277
Revolutions in the Sky 19261941
316
Setting the Stage 19291939
356
Battles in the Sky 19391945
395
Credits
691
Index
693
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Tom D. Crouch, author of The Bishop's Boys and A Dream of Wings, is senior curator of the aeronautics division at the National Air & Space Museum. He lives in Fairfax, Virginia.

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