The Aeronautic Society of New York  
  turn, Mr. Curtiss was brought down by a gust of wind, and had to land unintentionally
at a point further from the starting post than was allowed by the rules of the trophy
     Although the Society's Exhibition failed financially, no difficulty arose as to the pay-
ment of the $3,000 then still due upon the order to Mr. Curtiss. A number of mem-
bers of the Society readily subscribed the sum needed, and Mr. Curtiss, on formally
handing the machine over at Mineola, just before sailing for Europe, received his check
in full. But the interval between the exhibition and the formal handing over, which was
delayed through no wish of the Society, but only on account of Mr. Curtiss' desire to
practice in the machine for the Rheims events, was made much use of by those who have
always tried to belittle the efforts of the Society. The final closing of the contract included
one feature which was later to come to possess some interest. Mr. Curtiss agreed to hold
the Society immune from any costs or damages that might arise out of any suit brought in
reference to the machine for infringement in it of any patent. As is well know, a few
days later proceedings for alleged infringements were commenced by the Brothers Wright.
     Subsequently, an exhibiting corporation, separate from the Society, but composed
entirely of members, was formed to lease the machine from the Society so as to carry on
the business side of sending the macnine out upon the road, to give exhibitions and arouse
interest throughout the country, and also with the hope of raising funds for experimental
work and more sheds and workshops. Visits were paid to Toronto, Can.; Athens, Pa.;
Richmond, Va.; Philadelphia, Pa.; Cincinnati, O., and Los Angeles, Cal., at all of which
cities flights were made before very large crowds who thus saw a flying machine for the
first time; but at the close of the year a tempting offer by Charles J. Strobel of Toledo, O.,
for the purchase of the machine was accepted.
     While at Mineola, L. I., Mr. Willard made a sensational cross-country flight; but
while he was at a great height in the air the cam-shaft of the engine broke, and he never
again was able to feel the necessary confidence in his motor. At Toronto he flew above
Lake Ontario, being the first in this country to fly over water, and three times received bad
duckings. At Cincinnati he flew in contest against Mr. Curtiss, and beat him, winning
both trophies for speed and altitude. But, as a sample of the difficulty that has followed
Raiche-Crout Biplane---First Member's Machine to Fly

in Society in obtaining some of the credit due to its work, it is worth recording that,
when photographs of Willard in flight in Cincinnati were published in one of the New York
Sunday newspapers, they were labeled with the name of Curtiss.
     Very much complaint has been made against exhibition flights. But, until the wealthy
men of America come forward with the offer of large prizes as has been done in
Europe, where aeroplaning is now established as a sport, the giving of exhibition flights
must remain the chief resource to which an inventor can look for some return for

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