Friday, December 24, 2021

Author query on transcontinental travel time

From: "John Lancaster"

Hello—ran across Kevin Bunker’s name on your website, and sent him this query. Copying to you for wider distribution. Thanks!

I am a former Washington Post reporter writing a book on the 1919 transcontinental air race, to be published next fall by Liveright/W.W. Norton. I am now at the fact-checking stage, and ran across your name and email on the CPRR discussion group page. I though you might be able to help me on an important point.

For context, the winner of the race, Lt. Belvin Maynard, completed his flight from Mineola, Long Island, to San Francisco, in a total elapsed time of three days and six hours (78 hours total). At the time, his journey was described as the fastest crossing of the continent by any means. This would of course include express trains. For comparative purposes, I would like to know roughly how long it took to travel the same route by the fastest trains in or around 1919. (The mileage would be roughly the same, since the contest route followed the path of the UP railroad, to ease the distribution of fuel and supplies to airfields. The railroad also served as a navigation aid that pilots called the iron compass.)

Even an estimate would be helpful. Though I can’t offer you fame and fortune, I would happily credit any contribution in my end notes. ...

John Lancaster


Anonymous Anonymous said...

From: "John Lancaster"

Thanks very much for your help.


1/18/2022 5:05 AM  

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