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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Flying Circus brings high-flying stunts to town

The Flying Circus came to Spokane, thrilling 30,000 spectators with aerial stunts and mock bombing raids, reported The Spokane Daily Chronicle on April 25, 1919. (The Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)
The Flying Circus came to Spokane, thrilling 30,000 spectators with aerial stunts and mock bombing raids, reported The Spokane Daily Chronicle on April 25, 1919. (The Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)

The Flying Circus came to Spokane, thrilling 30,000 spectators with aerial stunts and mock bombing raids.

“One aviator caused a sensation for thousands of spectators in the downtown district when he made a nose dive, the machine continuing its downward spin until hidden from view behind buildings,” said the Spokane Daily Chronicle.

There were four Curtiss planes, two German Fokkers and a number of others.

The Curtiss planes dropped Victory Loan (war bond) literature in the shape of bombs. The “bombs” bore the following inscription: “How many Victory Notes would you be willing to buy if these were German bombs falling on your homes?”

The aviators gave rides to several local VIPs.

“When the pilot stopped the engine and started directly for the ground, I said ‘Good night, the engine’s busted.’ It was a relief when the plane flattened out once more,” said a passenger.

“It was one of the greatest shows ever seen in Spokane, under the biggest tent in the world,” said the paper.

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