September 18, 1923

The first mid-air hookup of an airplane to an airship takes place over Langley Field, Va., as a pilot flying a Sperry M-1 Messenger, with its top-wing mounted trapeze, hooks on to a rig suspended below the Goodyear D-3 airship and shuts the engine down. The Messenger, the smallest aircraft ever built for the Army, is intended as a “dispatch rider of the sky,” relaying messages between field commanders. This test is one of several experimental tasks the aircraft would be used to accomplish.