Old Soggy no. 1 - the uninhibited story of Slats Rogers
by Rodgers, Slats. and Stilwell, Hart
pub. by Julian Messner, NY - 1954     later editions in a series on the history of flight - Arno Press, NY 1972     ISBN 0405037791
- 294 p. - other ed.     249 p.
Slats Rodgers was a railroad engineer. He was the first person to build an airplane in Texas. He did so from plans from a popular magazine. The first effort did not fly flat and straight. One wing sogged down hence the title of this biography. It flew a some distance then crashed. This experience did not deter him from trying again, and having better success.
He became quite an adept flier and was legendary among fliers in Texas. He flew stunts for Hollywood productions and became expert in how to crash an airplane and walk away personally unharmed. His method... strap yourself in snugly, carry a very sharp knife to cut the straps loose and fly between something which would shear both wings off and stop the airplane.
He was the first, or one of the first. to fly through an airplane hanger where the doors on both ends were open. He flew payroll and other goods into Mexico when land transportation was too dangerous. He smuggled goods such as watch parts across the US/Mexican border. He smuggled people (Chinese) into USA from Mexico.
He was the father of the crop dusting industry in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas.
Although larger than life by reputation, he was a real person. Some of old residents of The Valley remember him.
In many places this is a very funny book. A good read.

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