Henri Farman

Henri Farman (26 May 1874[1]– 17 July 1958[2][3]) was an Anglo-French aviator and aircraft designer and manufacturer with his brother Maurice Farman. Before dedicating himself to aviation he gained fame as a sportsman, specifically in cycling[4] and motor racing. Henri took French nationality in 1937.[3]

Henri Farman
Henry Farman.jpg
Born(1874-05-26)26 May 1874
Paris
Died17 July 1958(1958-07-17) (aged 84)
Paris
Other namesHenry Farman
RelativesMaurice Farman, Richard Farman

Family and early lifeEdit

Henri Farman was born in Paris, France, and was baptised as Harry Edgar Mudford Farman. He was a son of Thomas Frederick Farman, the Paris correspondent of the London Standard.[5][1] His father was born in 1845 at Layer Marney, Essex, England.[6] His mother, Sophia Ann Louisa Mudford, was born in Canterbury, Kent, on 9 September 1841. She was baptised on 16 July 1844 at St Pancras Old Church in London, and was a daughter of the author William Mudford, who by the time of Sophia's baptism was living at Harrington Square.[7][8][6][9] Sophia and Thomas were married at St George's Hanover Square Church London, on 31 August 1868.[8][10]

Henri trained as a painter at the École des Beaux Arts, but soon became interested in the new mechanical inventions that were appearing at the end of the 19th century. He was able to pursue this interest as an amateur sportsman.[11][5]

CyclingEdit

He took part in cycle races from the age of fourteen, and started winning some races. Brother Maurice Farman also began cycle racing at the same age and started winning prizes.[12] Henri became a championship cyclist, and won the Paris - Clermont-Ferrand race on 6 June 1892.[13][14]On 6 October 1892 he won the French Championship, at the Vélodrome Buffalo in Paris, over a distance of 100 kilometres.[15]

On 25 June 1893, Henri went by bicycle from Paris to Madrid with the journalist, author, and French cyclist Edouard de Perrodil. Edouard had written an account of this journey, and a book was published by MM. C. Marpon and Flammarion, titled Vélo ! Toro! Paris-Madrid bicyclette en 1893, which included drawings by Farman. They were received by the French Ambassador, among others upon reaching Madrid.[16][17]

He then took part in tandem races with his brother Maurice Farman, forming a successful partnership.[18][5] On 31 January 1895, at the Vélodrome d'Hiver, the Farman brothers broke the tandem bicycle record, covering 44.906 kilometres in an hour.[19] They announced their retirement from cycling in November 1896.[20]

Motor racingEdit

At the around the same time as his brother Maurice, Henri discovered motor racing. On 17 February 1901, he won the light car class (400 - 650kg) Grand Prix du Palais d'Hiver, of the Circuit du sud-ouest. Maurice Farman won the heavy car class of the race.[21] On 29 May 1901, Henri took part in the Paris-Bordeaux race and finished in seventh place. This was an open-entry race held concurrently with the 1901 Gordon Bennett Cup, and over the same course.[22] Fifth place was taken in the 1901 Paris to Berlin Race.[23] Henri won the heavy class section of the 1902 Paris - Vienna race. Marcel Renault came first in the general classification of this race.[24] He took third place in the 1903 Gordon Bennett Cup.

He had an accident during the elimination trials for the 1905 Gordon Bennett Cup, on 16 June, over the hilly Auvergne circuit. While on the last round of this circuit, descending the Clermont Ferrand hill, on one of the turns in that descent, his car skidded. Henri and his chauffeur were lifted from the car, and ended up on top of a tree. Many onlookers believed he had been killed. But Henri was unharmed, came down from the tree and smoked a cigarette. He believed his car had ended up at the bottom of a ravine after this accident, but was not certain about the final destination of it.[25][26]

 
Farman making the first cross-country flight accomplished with an aeroplane

AviationEdit

He started practicing in 1907 with a homemade biplane glider on the sandhills of Le Touquet, after first experimenting with model aeroplanes of different sizes.[27] Henri then decided he wanted a machine powered plane, and ordered a Voisin 1907 biplane on 1 June 1907.[28] He used this aircraft to set many official records for both distance and duration.

On 26 October 1907, at Issy-les-Moulineaux, France, he made flights, among others,[29] of 363, 403, and 771 metres in the plane. And he also started to turn the plane in the air on this date.[30] The distance of 771 metres was completed in 52 seconds. It was the longest flight in the world that year, and won Farman the Ernest Archdeacon Cup.[31] He made a complete circular flight of 1,030 metres, in 1 minute 14 seconds on 10 November 1907 at Issy. This was the first time that a European aeroplane had completed a full circle. And the first time that an aeroplane, other than a Wright brothers one, had stayed in the air for longer than a minute.[28][29]

The Voisin-Farman I was also the first biplane in Europe, to fly a circular circuit of 1 kilometre, over a predetermined course, on 13 January 1908.[28][32] This again occurred at Issy-les-Moulineaux, France, and won Henri the 50,000 franc Grand Prix d'Aviation offered by Henri Deutsch de la Meurthe.[33][34] And on 21 March 1908 at the same place, he made a flight of 2.004 Kilometres.[30]

On 30 October 1908, Farman went on to make the first cross-country flight in Europe. Henri flew from his hangars at Camp de Châlons, Bouy,[5][29][35] to Reims, landing at the Cavalry ground. It was a distance of 27 Kilometres.[5][30][36][37]

 
MF.11 "Shorthorn"
 
The passenger transport Goliath

By early 1909, Farman fell out with Gabriel Voisin because Voisin had sold an aircraft that had been built to Farman's specifications to J.T.C. Moore-Brabazon. This aircraft was named the Bird of Passage by Brabazon. So Henri started manufacturing aircraft to his own design. The first of these, the Farman III, first flew in April 1909. It was an immediate success and widely imitated.[38]

In 1909, he opened a flying school at Châlons-sur-Marne at which George Bertram Cockburn was the first pupil.[39] In this same year he made further record breaking flights. One of 180 kilometres in just over 3 hours, at Reims on 27 August. And one of 232 kilometres in 4 hours 17 minutes and 53 seconds,[40] at Mourmelon-le-Grand on 3 November. In October 1909 he appeared at the Blackpool Aviation Week, Britain's first air show, at which he won over £2000 in prizes.[41]

In partnership with his two brothers Maurice and Richard (Dick), he built a highly successful and innovative aircraft manufacturing plant. Their 1914 model was used extensively for artillery observation and reconnaissance during World War I. The Farman Aircraft company's Goliath was the first long-distance passenger airliner, beginning regular Paris-London (Croydon Airport) flights on 8 February 1919.

He was made a chevalier of the French Légion d'honneur in 1919. Along with Maurice, he retired in 1937 when the French Popular Front government nationalised the aircraft industry; Farman's company becoming part of the Societe Nationale de Constructions Aeronautiques du Centre.[3]

Henry Farman took French nationality in 1937.

He died in Paris and is buried in the Cimetière de Passy in Paris.[42]

In 1988, Farman was inducted into the International Air & Space Hall of Fame at the San Diego Air & Space Museum.[43]

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

Notes
  1. ^ a b "Chapter Three: Awakening in France." Contact! The Story Of The Early Aviators. p. 38. Unabridged republication of the revised edition of Contact! The Story Of The Early Birds, The Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C., 1987, Dover Publications 2002, New York. Accessed via Google books. Retrieved 13 August 2020.
  2. ^ "A Pioneer of Aviation Dies: M. Henry Farman." Illustrated London News, 26 July 1958, p. 10. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  3. ^ a b c Flight obituary
  4. ^ "Henri Farman palmares on CyclingRanking.com". CyclingRanking.com.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Aviators at Rheims. Personal Sketches: M. Henri Farman." London Evening Standard, 24 August 1909, p. 8. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  6. ^ a b "England and Wales Census, 1871", database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VF8G-DFL : 27 September 2019), Thomas Farman in entry for Frederick Mudford, 1871. Retrieved 13 August 2020.
  7. ^ "London, England, Church of England Births and Baptisms, 1813-1917 for Sophia Ann Louisa Mudford." St Pancras: Baptisms 1844, No. 1267, p. 183.Ancestry image p. 92. London Metropolitan Archives; London, England; Reference Number: p90/pan1/024. Ancestry.com. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  8. ^ a b "City of Westminster Archives Centre; London, England; Westminster Church of England Parish Registers; Reference: STC/PR/1/2." Ancestry.com. Westminster, London, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1935 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2020. Retrieved 13 August 2020.
  9. ^ "England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975", database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:NYY9-XZQ : 24 March 2020), Sophia Ann Louisa Mudford, 1844. Retrieved 13 August 2020.
  10. ^ "Marriages: Farman – Mudford." Chelmsford Chronicle, 11 September 1868, p. 8. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  11. ^ "Henry Farman" Grace's Guide To British Industrial History. Retrieved 19 August 2020.
  12. ^ "Farman: 1904." From Motoring Annual and Motorist’s Year Book 1904, via Grace's Guide To British Industrial History. Retrieved 19 August 2020.
  13. ^ "Sporting and Cricket Notes." St James's Gazette, 7 June 1892, p. 7. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  14. ^ "Paris - Clermont-Ferrand 1892." Accessed via CyclingRanking.com. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  15. ^ "Cycling in France." London Evening Standard, 8 October 1892, p. 3. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  16. ^ "Cycling - A Ride from France to Spain." Dublin Evening Telegraph, 22 June 1893, p. 3. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 24 October 2020.
  17. ^ "Paris by Day." Daily Telegraph & Courier (London), 4 November 1893, p. 3. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 24 October 2020.
  18. ^ "1902 Who's Who in Light Cars: Farman" Grace's Guide To British Industrial History. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  19. ^ "Cycling. Bicycle Record." Western Morning News, 1 February 1895, p. 7. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 26 October 2020.
  20. ^ "A Retiring Franco-AngloRider." Sporting Life, 11 November 1896, p. 7.The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 26 October 2020.
  21. ^ "The Brothers Farman Take Two Firsts." Sporting Life, 20 February 1901, p. 8. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 23 October 2020.
  22. ^ "1901 Paris-Bordeaux Race." Grace's Guide To British Industrial History. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  23. ^ "1901 Paris-Berlin Race." Grace's Guide To British Industrial History. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  24. ^ "A View of the Race.By Charles Jarrott, competitor in the 1902 Paris to Vienna race." From Ten Years of Motors and Motor Racing,E.P.Dutton and Company, New York, Charles Jarrott, 1906, pp. 131-154. Accessed via The Motor Miscellany. Retrieved 18 August 2020.
  25. ^ "Gordon Bennett Race: Accidents on French Course. Mr. Farman's Missing Car." London Daily News, 17 June 1905. p. 7. The British Newspaper Archive: Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited in partnership with the British Library. Retrieved 24 October 2020.
  26. ^ "The Farman Brothers: Maurice and Henry." From Ten Years of Motors and Motor Racing,E.P.Dutton and Company, New York, Charles Jarrott, 1906, pp214-215. Accessed via The Motor Miscellany. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  27. ^ "Chapter Three: Awakening in France." Contact! The Story Of The Early Aviators.p. 39. Unabridged republication of the revised edition of Contact! The Story Of The Early Birds, copyright the Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, D.C., 1987, Dover Publications 2002, New York. Accessed via Google books. Retrieved 13 August 2020.
  28. ^ a b c "Voisin-Farman I." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, inc., Tom D. Crouch, January 27, 2010. Retrieved 11 August 2020.
  29. ^ a b c "Henri Farman, 1874–1958: Farman Chronology" Early Aviators.com. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  30. ^ a b c "Progress of Mechanical Flight" Flight, 2 January 1909, p. 12. Accessed via the Internet Archive, Wayback Machine. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  31. ^ "This Day in Aviation. Important Dates in Aviation History: Tag Archives: Ernest Archdeacon: 26 October 1907." Bryan R. Swopes, 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  32. ^ "History Of Flight: Other Aviation Pioneers." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, inc., December 3, 2018. Retrieved 11 August 2020.
  33. ^ ""Prize Patrol", from Wright Brothers Aeroplane Company, a virtual museum of pioneer aviation". Archived from the original on 12 March 2009. Retrieved 31 December 2008.
  34. ^ * Johnstone, Rupert (April 1908). "The Derby of the Air: How Mr. Farman Won The Blue Ribbon of Aeronautics". The World's Work: A History of Our Time. XV: 10127–10132.
  35. ^ "Grace's Guide To British Industrial History: Early Flight Records." From Flight' magazine, 1910. Retrieved 12 August 2020.'
  36. ^ "Le premier Voyage en Aéroplane." Le Matin, October 31, 1908: Gallica bnf.fr.National Library of France. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  37. ^ "Henry Farman.The First Passengers and the First Cross-Country." Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  38. ^ "Farman III." Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, inc., Tom D. Crouch, April 4, 2008. Retrieved 11 August 2020.
  39. ^ Villard, Henry (1987) Contact! The Story of the Early Aviators, Smithsonian Institution Press, ISBN 0-486-42327-1
  40. ^ " One Year of Flying and Flight. A 1909 Retrospect: The Unbroken Chain Of Events" Flight, No. 53, Vol. II, No. 1, p. 3. Accessed via the Internet Archive, Wayback Machine. Retrieved 11 August 2020.
  41. ^ "Blackpool Aviation Week Report". Flight magazine. 30 October 1909.
  42. ^ Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 12 August 2020), memorial page for Henri Farman (26 May 1874–18 Jul 1958), Find a Grave Memorial no. 7163, citing Cimetiere de Passy, Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France ; Maintained by Find A Grave .
  43. ^ Sprekelmeyer, Linda, editor. These We Honor: The International Aerospace Hall of Fame. Donning Co. Publishers, 2006. ISBN 978-1-57864-397-4.
References

External linksEdit

  Media related to Henri Farman at Wikimedia Commons