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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Building the Vision: Newspaper clippings detail Nicholas/Beazley feats

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

After a family-filled Labor Day Weekend, I find it a little hard to get back to reality. I suspect it is the same for many of you. In doing so, however, I am reminded that I am to make a couple of presentations this week, concerning the Civic Center/Museum project. I must say that each time I "go out" to give a program I am charged up again as I talk about the way this addition to Marshall will benefit everyone, and, at the same time, enable us to acknowledge and preserve our past.

I would like to take this opportunity to remind any of you who are members of a club, group, or organization to contact the headquarters on the Marshall square (660) 886-2630 to arrange for a program. I take another team member with me ... the Nicholas/Beazley portion of the presentation ... usually Bill Riggins or Bryan Berlin. We bring "visual aids" (a MUST for an old school teacher) and even have attractive hand-outs (also a MUST for an educator). We present the plans for the building and talk about what it will bring to the community, and follow that segment with a question and answer session. It is during this exchange that I have often been the recipient of wonderful information and reminiscences from the audience. We have a great time and we are cheap (in cost), as we come to you FREE of charge. Can't beat that price!

I don't think I have mentioned that the materials I am pouring through, regarding the Nicholas/Beazley history, come, in large part, from the clippings about the company and its chief teacher and pilot, Dwight (Barney) Zimmerley. Of course, I work from copies of the articles in the scrapbook. The main reason for that, aside from the fact that I wouldn't trust myself with the originals, is that the actual book is housed in the SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION. Wow!

In perusing the materials, I found an article that I thought was really fun. I will be sharing it with you today. Along with the content itself, please note the phrasing and editorializing that is reminiscent of a journalistic style that exists no longer. I will do my own editorializing by saying that although we pride ourselves these days on "just the facts, ma'am ... just the facts," the old style did lend a color and character that wasn't all bad.

"Contact" is Lost

"Nicholas-Beazley Airport is in mourning.

"All because "Contact" is lost.

"Contact," if you don't know, is the official mascot of the pilots and students at the flying field. She is a little yellow and white dog, weighing about 10 pounds. She has been living at the field several months and had become distinctly airminded, taking many rides with pilots and students.

"Several of the senior students brought her down town to celebrate the Fourth. After a dinner of nice chicken bones at a café, the party wandered out on the street to see the sights. About that time several firecrackers were exploded near "Contact" and she took to her heels and fled. Nothing has been seen of her since.

"And what is worse, D. S. (Barney) Zimmerley had taken a great liking to the mascot and gave instructions to the boys that she be taken care of while he was away setting records. Now she is lost and Barney is coming home. The pilots and students fear the worst.

"A free ride in a Barling NB-3, with Zimmerley as pilot, will be given the party returning "Contact" to the Airport."

As of this writing, I have not found any more information about "Contact." Does anyone "out there" know if she was found and returned? If so, please give me a call. Otherwise, I will continue my intensive research into the matter and report as soon as I learn something!

I now turn to another "first" by the Nicholas/Beazley Company, as recorded in the Jefferson City newspaper:

"Quick Trip in Plane to Increase Capital Stock

"Marshall Airplane Co. Increases From $25,000 to

"$1,500,000 and Uses the Most Modern Method

"of Carrying Out the Details

"In a desire to show the practicable uses of the airplane in every-day business, the Nicholas-Beazley Airplane Company, of Marshall, sent incorporation papers applying for an increase of stock from $25,000 to $1,500,000 to the Corporation Department at the Secretary of State's office today.

"The plane arrived shortly afternoon and landed on the city flying field across the river. The pilot of the plane told F. D. Stockard, of the Corporation Department that the entire trip from the time he had left the flying field at Marshall until he had landed in this city required only 30 minutes.

"The pilot also stated that the company had planned to have the articles of increased incorporation recorded in the courthouse at Saline County before it closed today.

"The plane used for the trip was one of the new type manufactured by the Nicholas-Beazley company and is of the same model which was used in an effort to break the world's record for sustained flying a few weeks ago.

"The pilot stated that he hoped to make the return trip in about forty minutes.

"This is the first time documents of that nature were brought to Jefferson City in an airplane by an airplane company."

Check this out ...

As you may remember from a previous article, plans were being made in Marshall for a dinner to honor Barney Zimmerley following his record-setting flight for distance in a light plane. You might enjoy reading this notice about the upcoming affair, as written in The Marshall Democrat-News:

"Zimmerley Banquet is Tuesday Evening

"Only 125 Plates Can be Reserved for

"Dinner in Honor of Marshall

"Pilot ... Tickets Are Going Fast

"Plans are being perfected for the dinner in honor of D. S. (Barney) Zimmerley at 7:30 next Tuesday evening at the Goodwin Hotel and tickets are now on sale for the affair, which is expected to be most interesting. Tickets may be secured from Howard Robinson, R. B. VanZant or at the Goodwin Hotel.

Inasmuch as the dinner is limited to 125 persons, reservations should be made at once. It is a man's affair and is being sponsored by the Marshall Chapter of the National Aeronautic Association.

"Those in charge feel certain that Harry Block, president of the Missouri Aeronautic Association, will be present and make the address. He will also present the charter to the local chapter with appropriate ceremony.

Building the Vision appears on Wednesday.

Building the Vision