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The Octave Chanute Pages

Focusing on Chanute's contributions to the invention of the airplane and his glider experiments in the Indiana Dunes in 1896.
Gliding Experiments now with all the images!

Chanute Logo Table of Contents

An Overview and Introduction

  • Wings Off the Dunes - an essay about the experiments and significance.

    The Experiments
    Chanute's view in his own words.

  • The Diary - Chanute's diary of the two visits to the Indiana Dunes with images from those trips.
  • Gliding Experiments - An address by Octave Chanute delivered 20th of October, 1897. [Gliding experiments now with all the images.

Newspaper and eyewitness accounts
Octave Chanute's glider experiments in the dunes of Miller beach immediately attracted a goodly number of people, locals and reporters alike. These newspaper accounts are included to illustrate that interest, although it must be advised that they are not necessarily accurate.

These accounts have been greatly expanded thanks to the contribution of Ms. Simine Short. The eyewitness accounts now have their very own Table of Contents. 

The Gliders

A great picture of the experimenters in camp at Miller with the Albatross


  • Maps
    • First and Second Experiments - locations
    • First Experiments: Marquette Park - showing the location of "Chanute Hill" in 1896 and the original course of the Grand Calumet River.
  • Replicas - a list of of the Chanute-Herring Gliders around the country with links to those museums that have web site.
  • Replicas built in 1996 - Pictures, links and descriptions of the three gliders which were built in the centennial year of 1996.
  • An extended bibliography of writings by and about Chanute, including manuscript collections and links to writings on the web.
  • So you want to build a Chanute Glider? - Information about building a Chanute glider replica.

Octave Chanute - [Chanute portrait - chan_por.jpg]this Chicago engineer was the 'elder statesman' of aeronautical experiments in 1900. His glider experiments at Miller Beach in 1896 produced the most influential and significant glider of the pre-Wright era.




The summer of 1996 marked the centennial of Chanute's experiments in the Indiana Dunes. Folks from all over the country converged on Marquette Park for a celebration and test flights of Chanute glider replicas on
July 27, 1996

The celebration was sponsored by the Chanute-Aquatorium Society, an organization dedicated to restoring the 1920's vintage bathhouse on Miller Beach and creating a museum to Chanute's glider experiments and the Tuskegee Airmen of World War II.

Of special interest: [To fly picture - to_fly2.gif]If you have further interest in the invention of the airplane, Gary Bradshaw is building a very ambitious site devoted to that subject. The site features a gallery of pre-Wright brothers inventors and experimenters, as well as a digital library of Wright photographs from the Library of Congress. "To Fly is Everything.." is the 'front page' of this web site. "To Fly is Everything..." has a number of Chanute's writings, including Progress in Flying Machines that was published in 1894.
A good deal of the material on these Chanute Pages dovetail with the history of the invention of the airplane. To provide links between the Chanute Pages and "To Fly is Everything..." you may encounter the icon [ which is a link to relevant material in Gary's pages. 

 Slowly coming online at 'To Fly is Everything..." is the Chanute-Wright correspondence from 1900 to 1910 which is vital to understanding the relationship between Chanute and the Wright brothers. That correspondence is also a primary source of descriptions of the Wright brothers experiments and eventual success.

Other Aviation Sites of Interest

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This site has been selected as a featured site in StudyWeb, "The Learning Portal".

CoolSchool Media Award

Thanks to Ms. Simine Short for help and assistance in compiling this information.

[Chanute Pages Footer]

Chanute's Diary of 1896 Newspaper and Eyewitness Accounts Maps Centennial Celebration - 1996
Bibliography Chanute Glider Replicas Overview of the Chanute Gliders
Steve's Main Index Main Chanute Index Page Miller Beach Pages

Steve Spicer

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