Telegram to Benjamin Lipsner, September 4, 1918
In a 23-word Western Union telegram Otto Praeger, second assistant postmaster general, wires Captain Benjamin B. Lipsner information from Belmont Park, Long Island, New York, that pilot Edward V. “Turk” Gardner’s plane “may” be ready to start the New York to Chicago pathfinder flight at 6:00 a.m. [September 5, 1918.] The gas pump on Gardner’s plane had broken earlier on its final trial run [see telegram (photocopy) from Praeger's chief clerk, George Conner, to Benjamin Lipsner, September 4, 1918, object number 1982.0157.714]. Gardner will fly the Curtiss R4-1M powered by a 400 horsepower V-12 Liberty engine. Mechanic Edward C. Radel, who had been mechanic for Katherine Stinson, the first woman to fly mail in the United States, would accompany Gardner in his two-seat biplane.