Glenn Curtiss
Glenn Hammond Curtiss (May 21, 1878 – July 23, 1930) was an American aviation
Aviation is the design, development, production, operation, and use of aircraft, especially heavier-than-air aircraft. Aviation is derived from avis, the Latin word for bird.-History:...

 pioneer and a founder of the U.S. aircraft industry. He began his career as a bicycle then motorcycle builder and racer, later also manufacturing engines for airships as early as 1906. In 1908 Curtiss joined the Aerial Experiment Association
Aerial Experiment Association
The Aerial Experiment Association was a Canadian aeronautical research group formed on 30 September 1907, under the tutelage of Dr. Alexander Graham Bell...

 (AEA), a pioneering research group founded by Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander Graham Bell was an eminent scientist, inventor, engineer and innovator who is credited with inventing the first practical telephone....

 at Beinn Bhreagh, Nova Scotia to build flying machines.

Curtiss rose to fame by making the first officially witnessed flight in North America, winning a race at the world's first international air meet in France, and making the first long-distance flight in the United States.