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Aerial flight : England to Australia, 1919
Bib ID 7730236
Format ObjectObject [text, card]
Author
John Martin & Co, issuing body
 
Description Rundle St., Adelaide : John Martin & Co. Ltd., [1920] 
1 advertising fan : illustrations, map, portraits ; 38 x 21 cm 
Summary

A fan issued as a souvenir to celebrate the winning flight of Ross Smith and Keith Smith from London to Darwin in the 1919 England to Australia Air Race, and as an advertisement for the department store, John Martin (later John Martin’s) of Rundle Street, Adelaide, South Australia. The fan is made of roughly oval cardboard (240 x 205 mm) stapled to a wooden handle (250 x 12 x 6 mm). The recto features the text above, sepia-toned circular portraits of the two brothers, the itinerary, and a map showing the route from London to Adelaide. The verso features a pictorial advertisement for the Adelaide department store, John Martin's, ‘Busy! Busy! always Busy! The BIG store, “Where your Money goes Farthest”, Rundle St., Adelaide.’ The recto of the fan has 'Copyright Reserved' printed in the bottom right area, suggesting the makers of the fan may have canvassed any number of businesses along the victory route, and sold the advertising space on the verso to more than just John Martin’s. The fan would have been produced after the Smith brothers arrival in Darwin (and the conferral of their knighthoods on 22 December 1919) and probably shortly before their long delayed and highly anticipated arrival in their home town of Adelaide on 23 March 1920. —Based on a catalogue entry from Michael Treloar Antiquarian Booksellers, March 2018.

Biography/History

“In 1919 Australian Prime Minister William Hughes offered a £10,000 prize on behalf of the Australian government for the first Australians to fly an aircraft from England to Australia, in under 30 consecutive days. Of the six teams that entered the race, the winning crew and first to arrive in Australia, flew in the Vickers Vimy G-EAOU bomber, departing London on 12 November 1919, and arriving in Darwin 27 days and 20 hours later, on 10 December 1919. They flew via Lyon, Rome, Cairo, Delhi, Calcutta, Singapore, and Surabaya in Indonesia (where the aircraft became bogged and bamboo mats were placed on the airstrip), finally arriving in Darwin. The crew consisted of South Australian pilots and brothers Captain Ross Macpherson Smith and Lieutenant Keith Macpherson Smith, with mechanics Sergeants Walter Henry Shiers and James Mallett Bennett. The four men shared the prize money, Keith and Ross Smith were knighted, and Shiers and Bennett were awarded bars to their Air Force Medals and honorary commissions. After the flight, the crew flew to Sydney and eventually returned to Adelaide in 1920, making many stops along the way for spectators to welcome home the victors.”—State Library of South Australia.

Notes

Text continues: Capt. Sir Ross Smith KBE, MC, DFC. Lieut. Sir Keith Smith KBE. Sergt. J.M. Bennett (Air Force Medal and Bar). Sergt. W.H. Shiers (Air Force Medal and Bar).

Subjects Smith, Ross Macpherson, Sir, 1892-1922.  |  Smith, Keith Macpherson, Sir, 1890-1955.  |  John Martin & Co.  |  Air pilots -- Australia.  |  Airplane racing.  |  Aeronautics -- Competitions.  |  Advertising -- Department stores -- South Australia -- Adelaide.  |  Department stores -- South Australia -- Adelaide.  |  Trade literature -- South Australia.  |  Fans.  |  Australian
Also Titled

John Martin & Co. Ltd. : busy! busy! always busy!

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