In the 1970s, the Smithsonian Institution established their "National Landmarks of Flight" program. The National Soaring Museum established its corresponding National Landmarks of Soaring program in 1980 to identify and memorialize sites, individuals, or historic events related to the national history of motor less flight; and in the process collect, reserve and interpret documents and materials related to each approved Landmark.

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For an updated listing visit the Museum's website and click on "Landmarks of Sailing." To go directly to the Chanute Landmark click here.

National Landmarks of Soaring:

  1. Cape Cod, Massachusetts: Honors Ralph S. Barnaby's 15-minute, 6-second flight in 1921, exceeding Orville Wright's record soaring flight of 9 minutes, 45 seconds established October 24, 1911.
    Landmark established 13 June 1981.
  2. Rhodes Farm, Elmira, New York: Commemorates the support of soaring by the Elmira community over the past fifty years and the Rhodes Farm, site of the first Soaring Society of America-sponsored National Contest in 1932.
    Landmark established 10 July, 1982.
  3. Akron, Ohio: Honors the citizens of Akron and the first towed glider flight from Akron to Columbus carrying U.S. Mail in a Gross 4-place glider in 1935.
    Landmark established 29 June 1983.
  4. Frankfort, Michigan: Frankfort has been a soaring Mecca since the early 1930s: the original site of the Frankfort Sailplane Manufacturing Company (which manufactured the famous Cinema sailplanes and later the TG-1). The Frankfort Soaring Association has hosted two national soaring meets and numerous Midwest gliding contests.
    Landmark established 9 May 1992
  5. Torrey Pines, California: Honors the pioneers who flew gliders from this site in the 1930s, and future pilots who continue to fly through all forms of motor less flight.
    Landmark established 6 June 1992.
  6. Waynesboro, Virginia: Honors a 121.6 mile record flight by Richard Chichester duPont in a Bowlus Albatross sailplane on September 21, 1933.
    Landmark established 17 September 1993.
  7. Point Loma, California: Dedicated to the pioneering spirits of William H. Bowlus and Jack C. Barstow, making milestone flights in glider history at this site.
    Landmark established 27 April 1996.
  8. Miller Beach, Indiana: Dedicated to Octave Chanute and his assistants whose gliding experiments here in the summer of 1896 helped make sustained flight a reality.
    Landmark established 27 July 1996. More information the 1996 event on these pages.
  9. Honolulu, Hawaii: Honors William A. Cocke, Jr., and his world endurance soaring record flight (21 hours, 34 minutes) set December 17-18 1931 in the Nighthawk.
    Landmark established 8 December 1996.

The National Soaring Museum (NSM) is a non-profit, educational, and scientific corporation affiliated with the Soaring Society of America (SSA). It is the official repository of the SSA's artifacts and memorabilia. The NSM is located at Harris Hill, Elmira, New York