Charles Terres Weymann, airplane designer, born to a Haitian mother

Haitians can be found in many areas of history, contributing to posterity through great works of art, insightful literature, inspiring music, or, in the case of Charles Terres Weymann, a legacy in the creation of airplanes.


Born in Haiti's capital on August 2, 1889 to a Haitian mother and American father, Charles Terres Weymann flew as a test pilot for Nieuport during the First World War. The knowledge he accrued from his time as a pilot was put to use in developing fabric bodies for road vehicles. This became a lucrative business for him as he opened three factories in less than a decade, creating a global empire spanning the United States, England and France.

This business went the way of the dinosaur by the late 1920's as glossy paint jobs on hard bodies became prevalent, but Weymann was able to save the factory in London, which started manufacturing bus bodies, though he would resign in 1932.

Eventually, Charles Terres Weymann returned to his roots in aviation, a field in which he'd excelled since earning his pilot's license, number 24, in 1909. His accomplishments in the aviation field include an attempt at the Michelin prize in 1910, participation in a Paris to Rome flight and the Circuit Européen in 1911, and a win one year later of an international air race with an average speed of 97 km per hour. Weymann left his handprint in the history of aviation with his design, along with associate engineer Georges Lepère, of crafts for the air such as the autogyros and the Weymann 66.

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Read more: diaspora, travel, Technology, Haitian-American, Airplane, Charles Terres Weymann, Polot, Technology

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