From the Archives: Bobbie Trout sets 1929 endurance record

From the Archives: Bobbie Trout sets 1929 endurance record
Feb. 11, 1929: Evelyn "Bobbie" Trout in flight suit standing beside her plane at Mines Field after setting women's endurance record. (Los Angeles Times Archive/UCLA)

Evelyn Trout took up flying at age 16. On Jan. 2, 1929, she broke the women’s endurance record with a 12-hour flight. But on Jan. 30, 1929, that record was broken by aviator Elinor Smith with a 13½-hour flight.

So on Feb. 10, 1929, Trout took back the record. A story in the next morning's Los Angeles Times reported:

Evelyn Trout – a wisp of a woman in a wisp of an airplane – landed at Mines Field yesterday after having flown alone more hours and more miles continuously than any other woman in the world ever did before. Also, she is the first woman ever to fly through an entire night. She may have taken up the heaviest loaded sixty-horse-power plane that ever left the ground.

Miss Trout, Bobbie, as she is more generally known, took off at Mines Field Sunday at 5:10:15 p.m. She landed at the same place yesterday at 10:16:22 a.m. She was in the air 17 hours, 5 minutes and 37 seconds, Joe Nikrent, chief timekeeper, announced.

The flight, Dudley Steele, contest chairman of the National Aeronautical Association, said, was three hours and forty-eight minutes longer than the previous woman's endurance record.

She flew, he said, approximately 860 miles. This, he pointed out, is not far under the world record hung up in Europe some time ago by a man who flew a plane in that class 932 miles over a charted course. Steele said her average speed was 50.292 miles per hours…

Miss Trout got out of the plane with but little more evidence of fatigue than if she had been up only a few hours.

"Hello mother," she cried to Mrs. George E. Trout, who ran to embrace her.

"We're awfully proud of you," Mrs. Trout said.

"Thanks mother, dear," Bobbie replied.

The young woman, who is 23 years of age, stretched herself and danced on first one foot and then the other.

"I need exercise," she said, straightening out her cramped limbs.

She posed patiently for newspaper photographers and laughingly talked with any of the crowd of several hundred that was on the field to see her land…

A similar photo of Bobbie Trout with her mother was published in the Feb. 12, 1929, Los Angeles Times. This photo was published in the Feb. 20, 1929, Los Angeles Times accompanying a different story on Miss Trout.

Trout died in 2003. Here is a link to her Los Angeles Times obituary: Evelyn 'Bobbi' Trout, 97; Record-Setting Aviatrix of the 1920s.

Mines Field is now Los Angeles International Airport.

This post was originally published on April 4, 2014.

July 6, 1999: Evelyn 'Bobbie' Trout, 93, of Carlsbad, with a painting of her 1929 Golden Eagle Chief monoplane, was the honored guest at the 1999 Van Nuys Air Show, marking the 70th anniversary of her first endurance record. Al Schaben / Los Angeles Times

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