College Park Aviation Museum
1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive
College Park, Maryland 20740
The College Park Aviation Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is located on the grounds of the world’s oldest continuously operating airport in College Park, MD. The airport was founded in 1909 when Wilbur Wright came here to give flight instruction to the 1st military aviators. Visitors to the museum step into an open 1½ story exhibit space, which highlights the display of unique aircraft and artifacts and tells the story of the airport’s many 1st in flight to today. The museum gallery contains historic and reproduction aircraft associated with the history of the airfield, as well as hands-on activities and interpretive areas for children of all ages
Completed in 2002, this reproduction Blériot XI monoplane was built in the College Park Aviation Museum’s own restoration shop. It was crafted by volunteers under the direction of restoration shop manager John Liebl, from drawings originally published by John Rozendaal in 1912.
The “Jennys” were the workhorses of the U.S. Air Mail Service, although the machines flown here at College Park were the JN-4H model, as opposed to the earlier JN-4D on display in the museum.
In the center of the museum’s main gallery is a unique aircraft representing the spirit of experimentation that pervades the history of College Park Airport. The Berliner Helicopter, on loan from the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, is the culmination of the experiments in vertical flight by Emile Berliner and his son Henry
This sleek red airplane was popular for its speed and efficiency in the air races of the 1930s at College Park Airport. With a 145 Warner Super Scarab engine, it could reach speeds of 120-148 mph. A common sight at George Brinckerhoff’s air meets, it was popular with pilots like Helen MacClosky and Pheobe Omilie.
The “Cub” was a common sight at general aviation airports throughout the 1930s, 40s and 50s, and George Brinckerhoff used the planes for flight instruction here at College Park Airport for 30 years.
A side-by-side seating, high-wing monoplane, the Taylorcraft has been retrofitted by our restoration shop to become the museum’s “Imagination Plane.” Visitors to the museum are encouraged to touch, explore, and sit in the cockpit of the blue 1939 aircraft. Aspiring pilots can operate the controls to move the elevator, rudder and ailerons. One wing has been left in various stages of completion, to illustrate the process of covering a wing with fabric.