LAKE GENEVA, 1915
|Walter printed: LAKE GENEVA, CURTISS FLYING BOAT|
On the reverse side is printed: POST CARD
At Lake Geneva, I gave a colored man a ride. We owed a bill at his restaurant and he took it out in trade. His friends talked him into it, even though he wasn't very keen on the idea. As soon as I got away from shore and opened the motor, he put his head between his hands and leaned way down, never looking up or out. He didn't raise up until I was on the water and taxiing into shore. On shore, he told all of his friends what a wonderful ride he had had. I never squealed on him.
The Curtiss boat at this time used a magneto which had a rigid shaft between it and the engine. This shaft was always breaking. The man who made the magneto would come down to the hangar to check the engine. He tried to get Curtiss to put a flexible connection in the shaft, but Curtiss wouldn'tt. Many a time while instructing out over the lake, the rigid shaft would break, forcing us to land on the water. Then, either my student or I would take off our shirt, climb up on top of the top wing, and wildly wave the shirt until the Coast Guard lookout would see us and send out a boat to tow us in.
Finally, Curtiss changed to another magneto and put in a flexible coupling.