Sept. 8, 1906 (Saturday)
THE CASE OF THE MISSING AIRSHIP or WHAT GOES UP MIGHT NOT NECESSARILY COME DOWN or NEWSPAPER LEAVES TALE OF AERONAUT UP IN THE AIR: Not surprisingly, a story of an aeronaut -- those romantic, light-headed folk -- has floated onto the front page of today's Washington Post says that William Matteray took off last night from Oconto, Wisc., in a "broken machine," drifted 14 miles at an altitude of 2,000 feet and -- disappeared from view.
Evidently, he knew the machine had problems. So did the spectators. Here's how the article explains why he took off in the first place:
The crowds, eager to see a man risk his life, declared that the story of a broken propeller shaft was told as a ruse to avoid making the ascension. Therefore, Matteray went up, just to "make good."
When last seen, he was "making good" while crossing Green Bay and heading toward the wide open spaces above Lake Michigan. This is not a good thing. Here's how the article ends:
The general opinion is that the airship descended into Lake Michigan and that the aeronaut was drowned.
Well, a "general opinion" isn't always right. Some research shows that he actually landed at a spot 6 miles southeast of Wolverine, Mich., and lived to tell his story. His tale is in an issue of the Englewood (Ill.) Times of Oct. 5, 1906. That's where the picture at right is from. But the story will have to wait until Oct. 5 for the re-telling.
HE ROLLED WITH 'ALABAMA': Word has come from England that the man known as the "Devil of the Alabama," John Low (right) died in Liverpool yesterday. Despite his nickname, he was evidently quite a decent man during his stint commanding the Confederate privateer. The article in today's Washington Post says that in his latter years, "He was a familiar figure at the Shipping Exchange and was prominent in connection with seamen's charities."