Film notes 35th anniversary of Wright Brothers' first flight and reviews advances in transportation brought about by rail and aircraft .An animated map of the United states before the advent of mechanized transport methods. It illustrates the difficult and long overland journey to travel from the East Coast to the West Coast. Travel by horse and wagon over the Santa Fe Trail in 1849 is recreated in a brief film clip. Next, a locomotive is shown pulling a passenger train at high speed along a railroad at the base of a mountain. Animated map charts fairly direct path from Coast to Coast, taking only 4 days by railroad. Next a nearly straight course is traced across the map illustrating the path of an airplane taking only seven and a half hours for the journey. Change of scene shows aerial view of Howard Hughes' Lockheed 14 Super Electra Special, Model 14-N2 ( NX18973), christened "New York World's Fair 1939," in flight over New York harbor with the skyline of Manhattan in the background. Camera follows the plane as it passes over lower Manhattan. The Empire State building is seen prominently with other skyscrapers below the aircraft. This was filmed, on July 14, 1938, as Hughes and his crew were returning from Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Floyd Bennett Field, on Long Island, at the conclusion of their around-the-world flight (circling the Northern Hemisphere) from July 10 - July 14, 1938.
Newsreel clip on Minnesota welcoming major league baseball to the state in April 1961. Exterior views of Metropolitan Stadium, the home of the new Minnesota Twins. Banner reads "The Minnesota Twins Welcome You." Announcer notes team is playing in Bloomington, seven miles from each of the state's two major cities, Minneapolis and St. Paul. View of 25,000 spectators, most bundled up for a chilly day, inside stadium for the home opener against the Washington Senators. Those on hand include baseball commissioner Ford Frick, American League president Joe Cronin, and Minnesota Governor Elmer Andersen. Announcer notes the previous Washington team moved to Minnesota and was replaced with a new Senators team in Washington. Dignitaries walk on field trailed by Minnesota manager Cookie Lavagetto and Washington manager Mickey Vernon. Dignitaries raise the American flag. Governor Andersen kisses a baseball and throws out the ceremonial first pitch. Announcer notes Twins lost this game, but says "Who cares?" because Minnesota is in the big leagues.
Lockheed Super Electra in flight during it's around the world trip. Pilot Howard Hughes in Minneapolis, Minnesota while the plane is refueled. A large crowd gathered around the aircraft. Men refuel the plane before it takes off for the last phase of around the world flight.
Howard Hughes during his around the world flight. Lockheed Super Electra in flight. Aircraft lands at Minneapolis, Minnesota for refueling. Hughes gets off the plane and talk to men. The name of the plane, 'New York World's Fair 1939' is seen on the fuselage. Men refuel the plane and it takes off.
Trans Atlantic flight to Ireland. Douglas Corrigan prepares for Trans Atlantic flight to Ireland in Curtiss Robin. Corrigan speaks to a policeman before take off. In Minneapolis, Minnesota Crown Prince Gustav Adolf of Sweden receives a warm reception. The Crown Prince arrives in a car. Cavalry units wave flags to welcome him. Dancers perform at a colorful ceremony to welcome the Crown Prince.
A football match between the Minnesota Golden Gophers and the Northwestern Wildcats in Minneapolis, Minnesota. People gather in a stadium to watch the match. The match in progress. Balloons flying in the sky. People cheering. The Minnesota Golden Gophers win the match 21-13.