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1662January 23, 1917: Birthday of Cheston Lee Eshelman., 1/23/2014, 12:00 am

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  • Eshelman@yahoogroups.com
    Jan 22, 2014
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      Reminder from: Eshelman Yahoo Group
      Title: January 23, 1917: Birthday of Cheston Lee Eshelman.
      Date: Thursday January 23, 2014
      Time: 12:00 am - 12:00 am (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time - Dublin / Edinburgh / Lisbon / London
      Location: McKnightstown, Pennsylvania
      Notes: Cheston Lee Eshelman was born in McKnightstown, Pennsylvania near Carlisle, and was an American inventor, aviator, manufacturer of aircraft, boats, garden machinery and small automobiles, and founder of the Cheston L. Eshelman Company and Eshelman Motors Corporation in Baltimore and Dundalk, Maryland.

      Since 1916 his parents Samuel Clarence Eshelman and Bertha Eshelman (nee Musselman, sister of canner-grower Christian H. Musselman of the CH Musselman Company, today part of Knouse Foods) had owned and operated the Fox Hill orchards in McKnightstown, and eventually expanded into retailing agricultural implements including Centaur tractors.

      As a youth Cheston was a member of Boy Scout Troop 76 at the Gettysburg Presbyterian Church and a member of the Future Farmers of America.

      On June 6, 1939 at age 22 Cheston Eshelman, now an aviation student, made the worldwide press after crashing a rented Luscombe all-metal 2-seat monoplane into the Atlantic Ocean near Georges Bank 180 miles southeast of Boston, Massachusetts on his second solo flight. The long-overdue craft was equipped with a radio and blind-flying instruments. The airplane's owner, an Edward Walz, pressed theft charges and the laughing Cheston was jailed after claiming (most likely tongue-in-cheek, though that certainly escalated the story) that he was attempting to fly to Mars. A police search on his person turned up 55 cents and eight bullets; he claimed the revolver was lost with the airplane. His written statement said the Mars attempt was "to survey a temporary hideout for the harmless people so they may escape in time of war the slave-enforced ultra-tragedy when the maniacs versus the he-men feud to destroy themselves and their possessions". A few months later the trawler Plymouth snagged pieces of the wrecked Luscomb in its nets off Georges Bank.

      For his complete biography, see Wikipedia under Cheston Lee Eshelman.
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