A close-up of the photo, including Pop Schreiber, with the plastic cover removed. [#0215 J.D. Foster
Collection, National Model Aviation Museum]
Annual Miniature Airplane Contest, Kansas City MO, October 2, 1938. [#0215 J. D. Foster Collection, National Model Aviation Museum]
In 2009, the National Model Aviation
Museum archives received a panoramic
photograph from donor J.D. Foster,
delivered to the museum by his friend,
Don Davis. It’s a great picture of
contestants who attended the Annual
Miniature Airplane Contest, on October
2, 1938, in Kansas City, Missouri.
Someone at Boeger Studio of Topeka,
Kansas, handwrote the location and
date of the event on the original
before copies were made. Although no
contestant names were listed, J.D. was
able to provide some of that information
and more about the photo’s provenance.
According to J.D. (via Don), the framed photo hung for
years in Pop Schreiber’s hobby shop. The shop’s name has
been identified by different sources as either the Model
Aircraft Institute (which sponsored the contest pictured),
or Country Club Aero Supply (in the book Do You Speak
Model Airplane, by Dave Thornburg). Its location was in the
neighborhood of 95th and Holmes streets in Kansas City,
J.D. worked at that hobby shop, and Pop gave the photo
to him. He applied yellow stickers to the front of the glass
to identify contestants. J.D. had some help from a relative
of his, Frank Lilly, who attended the contest. Names,
nicknames, or best guesses are handwritten on the stickers:
Jim Amis; Gene Salway; Leonard Muholkand[?]; Don
Zimmerman; Frank Lilly; C.O. Wright’s son, Motorcyc.
Fat.; Howard Deerdorf; Willobhy; Crawford or Tarpy; Pop
Schrieber [sic]; Mitch Crawford, Topeka; and Drawbridge
A piece of rigid plastic was placed on top of the glass with
numbers written in white ink to help others identify the
individuals. The numbers on the plastic run up to 71 (Frank
Lilly is number 17). A few people in the background are
unnumbered, but most of their faces are blurred.
After the numbers were applied, J.D. remembered another
gentleman flier’s name and added a white sticker to the
plastic layer, cut into the shape of an arrow with “Jess Clark”
written on it.
Thanks to the studio and J.D., we have a good start on
researching this event. However, we would like to have all
of the contestants’ names as well as more information about
the contest itself. What events took place? Who won the
contest? What interesting stories came from that event?
We will be posting the photograph showing more detail
in the museum’s online blog ( http://amablog.modelaircraft.
org/amamuseum). If you know any of the people in this
photograph, or have any documentation or memorabilia
from this contest, please contact us. You can call (765) 287-
1256, extension 511, or write to: National Model Aviation
Museum, Attn: Jackie Shalberg, 5151 E. Memorial Dr.,
Muncie IN 47302.
—National Model Aviation Museum staff
13 Model Aviation APRIL 2014