Replicas, Reproductions, and Models of the Chanute Gliders on Exhibit Worldwide

Click on any image on this page for a larger picture.

The closest that there is to a surviving Chanute glider is at the Musee de L'Air et de L'Espace at Le Bourget Airport in Paris, France. The glider that they have there is the one built for the 1904 St. Louis Exposition but has probably been rebuilt.

On August 16,2014 the dream of installing a full scale reproduction of the Chanute Glider was realized by the Chanute Aquatorium Society. The 1550 pound glider was built of powder coated stainless and galvanized steel with alumnium wings by Shannon and Sean Smith and their team at Kidstuff Playsystems.

Another builder, Stephan Nitsch, a German hang-gliding enthusiast, built a glider back in the 1970s or 80s. Sadly he died in 2008 but his family have kept his website alive. It's worth a visit!

Three glider replicas were built and flown in 1996, the Centennial year of Chanute's experiments. One of those, Paul Dees' glider, was donated to the Seattle Museum. See below for details. Check out the Celebration page on this site. I do not know if the Rochester Institute of Technology glider still exists.

There are a number of replicas of the Chanute gliders on display around the country and the world. The following list, which may or may not be complete, is in no particular order. Most of the museums have web sites, but you may not necessarily find the Chanute exhibit listed in the web site. If you plan to travel to a museum to see the Chanute Glider, check with the museum first to make sure it's on display. Additions and/or corrections will be greatly appreciated.

Click on thumbnails for a larger image.

Washington, D.C.

Paris, France

Indiana Dunes National Park Visitor Center

  • 1215 N State Road 49 Porter, Indiana 46304
    Park Visitor Website
    Google Map in new window
  • Built by Anton Bilek and Dick Clark from John Litchenberg's plans for the Chanute Air Museum in Rantoul, Illinois where it hung for many years.

Seattle, Washington - Museum of Flight

Rhinebeck, New York

Map - Rhinebeck

San Diego, CA - Aerospace Museum

  • Location: San Diego Aerospace Museum 2001 Pan American Plaza Balboa Park San Diego, CA
  • Free standing exhibit of miniature scale 12 wing 'Katydid' built by Johnny Litchenburg.
  • Full size glider built by Johnny Litchenburg.

Sidney, British Columbia

  • The Early Birds webpage
  • A beautiful reproduction of the 1897 glider built by Russ Carrington of Victoria and donated to the museum in 1989

Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Owls Head, Maine

  • Owls Head Transportation Museum
  • 1896 Glider page
  • The museum has a 1/2 scale replica of the Chanute glider as well as a 1/2 scale 1893 Lielienthal glider.

Hammond, Indiana

Windsor Locks, CT

Gary, Indiana - Gary/Chicago Airport

  • Terminal of the Gary-Chicago Airport
  • The Airport's Website
  • Photo courtesy of John Lenti and Simine Short.

Gary, Indiana - The Aquatorium

Gary, Indiana - Ivy Tech

  • Currently removed, May, 2020.
  • The outdoor recreation originally at the Rantoul Museum.
  • Expected to be reinstalled in Gary.

LaPorte County Historical Museum

  • A beautiful reproduction hanging in the entrance.
  • The Museum's Website
  • Glider acquired in 1998 from the Parker O'Malley Air Museum in Ghent, New York.

Elmira, NY - Arnot Mall

  • Arnot Mall in Elmira/Horseheads/Big Flats, New York
  • Elmira, NY: the home of the National Soaring Museum
  • A reproduction built by volunteers in the 1980's.

Dayton, Ohio - U.S. Air Force Museum

Elmira, NY - National Soaring Museum

West Hollywood, CA - Pacific Design Center

Germany: Anklam - The Otto Lilienthal Museum

Two striking models in this impressive museum:

Germany - Wasserkuppe

  • Location: Deutsches Segelflugmuseum mit Modellflug (German Gliding Museum with Model Flight)
  • Museum Facebook Page
  • Reproduction built by Carsten Brinkmeier - 2014.
  • Photo courtesy Peter Vercruijsse, Maastricht, Netherlands

Germany - Oberschleissheim

For more information on Carsten Brinkmeier's replicas see the article by Simine Short in The Bungee Cord - Spring 2018.
Brinkmeier has a book, in German, on how he built his gliders. He used many photos from this site but apparently forgot to give credit. German pages are in German, but Chrome's translator works well on German.

France - Marcé

  • Espace Air Passion, Angers Loire Aéroport, 49140 Marcé. (100 miles SW of Paris)
  • Web Page: collections-les-pionniers
  • Full size representation of amateur construction designed by Max Williams.

Additional Places

  • Kansas: Chanute  Travelers Building 0 E. Elm St. across from the old Santa Fe Railroad Depot Chanute Tourism office : 316-431-5229 2-wing flyer built by Johnny Litchenburg
  • Georgia: Warner Robins   Museum of Aviation located adjacent to Robins AFB. Admission to museum is free. The Chanute two winged glider was built by Jack Edwards of Hapville, Georgia in the 1970's and is displayed in the Art Gallery on the second floor of the Eagle Building with other pioneers of flight. 23' wingspan, 12' long, 5' high, 100 lbs.

Thanks to Simine Short for additions and corrections to this page.
Updated May, 2020. Contact me for additions, corrections or comments: