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Maughan’s Dawn-to-Dusk Flight

The first dawn-to-dusk flight across the U.S. was by Lt. Russell L. Maughan on June 23, 1924, from Mitchell Field, Long Island, N.Y., to San Francisco, Calif.

Taking off in a PW-8 at first light, Lt. Maughan raced the sun across the U.S. and after five refueling stops, landed at San Francisco 21 hrs, 48 1/2 minutes later. Although he did not actually land before the sun set, he was credited with making the first dawn-to-dusk flight because of the loss of 1 hour, 20 minutes at McCook Field, Dayton, Ohio, due to the repair of damage to his airplane caused by an eager mechanic who accidentally twisted off a fuel line valve with an oversize monkey wrench.

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