Stories, artifacts sought for Prairie Flyers exhibit


CLINTON — Firsthand accounts of wartime sacrifice and a daughter’s recollections of her father’s career as a TWA pilot are among the stories collected so far for the upcoming C.H. Moore Homestead and DeWitt County Museum exhibit on the county’s history of aviation.

  Prairie Flyers: A Century of Aviation in DeWitt County shares the stories of those whose lives have been touched in some way by aviation.  DeWitt County is home to military and commercial pilots – past and present—as well as mechanics, crop dusters and International Flying Farmers.

Museum director Joey Long is collecting artifacts and memorabilia from families and individuals for the  exhibit set to open May 28 and run through July 4. The Carriage Barn just west of the museum will  be transformed into a professionally designed exhibit that illustrates myriad elements of local aviation history.

The museum is collaborating with local aviator John Warner and Denis Hambucken, of New Hampshire, a professional historian, author and graphic artist with extensive experience in museum design.

Clinton author and journalist Edith Brady-Lunny is compiling stories for the exhibit.

The exhibit will feature many stories and artifacts from all areas of aviation history.

Anyone with a story or item to share is encouraged to contact Long at the museum. Information may be submitted as a short biography or narrative of an individual’s connection to aviation.

Stories collected so far for the community-based project include Vietnam War era helicopter pilots and mechanics and pilots captured or lost in World War II. The experience of growing up with a commercial airline pilot as a father has been shared, along with his uniform and other mementos. Women wholeft their mark as pilots, stewardesses, and ticket agents are also represented.

To submit a story or artifact for the exhibit, please contact Joey Long at (217) 935-6066.

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