First Aeroplane Flying in Canada National Historic Event

J. A. D. McCurdy sitting in a Curtiss biplane at Daytona Beach, Florida, March 28, 1911.
© Nova Scotia Archives, J. A. D. McCurdy 2007-058 vol. 003 no. 14

The first aeroplane flying in Canada was designated a national historic event in 1934.

Historical importance: Flight of the Silver Dart in 1909, first in Canada.

Commemorative plaque : Alexander Graham Bell Museum, Chebucto Street, Baddeck, Nova Scotia Footnote1

On February 23, 1909, more than 100 people witnessed the first successful powered flight in Canada, as the Silver Dart lifted off the ice of Baddeck Bay and flew 800 metres. The biplane, piloted by J. A. D. McCurdy, reached a speed of 65 kilometres per hour and an altitude of about 9 metres before making a smooth landing. Designed and built by the Aerial Experiment Association, founded by Mabel and Alexander Graham Bell, the Silver Dart was the culmination of this group's pioneering aeronautical research. Their success heralded the age of aviation in Canada.

Silver Dart in flight near Baddeck, Nova Scotia, 1909.
© Library and Archives Canada / PA-061741
General view of a building
General view of Alexander Graham Bell Museum, date unknown.

The National Program of Historical Commemoration relies on the participation of Canadians in the identification of places, events and persons of national historic significance. Any member of the public can nominate a topic for consideration by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.

Get information on how to participate in this process

Date modified :