Paul Ennis' 2T-1 "Menasco Special"
By Paul Ennis
Photo #1 was taken during the recovering process in our back yard in Suffern, New York in early 1932, and shows my dad holding me at age of 1 1/2 years in the rear cockpit. Note my right hand on the stick This was my first "checkout" in the Great Lakes.
Photo #2 shows the Great Lakes in the hangar at "Spook Rock", with his 1930 Kinner Bird standing outside in the snow. Note the "winter cover" on the Cirrus cylinders on the right side.
Photo #3 is our Great Lakes at Cincinnati Ohio during the 1933 "Liberty Aerial Treasure Hunt". This was an air cruise sponsored by Bernard MacFadden of Liberty Magazine which started in St. Louis, Missouri and ended in New York City. The task was to find the letters L-I-B-E-R-T-Y which had been placed on the ground in various cities between St. Louis and New York using clues printed on cards,given to each contestant just before they took off on the next leg of the trip.
Photo #4 is at Roosevelt Field, the final landing site of the "Liberty Aerial Treasure Hunt". Note our Great Lakes second from the end My dad came in 8th out of 90 entrants.
Photo #5. On the 1933 Florida Air Tour. Stopped at Chapel Hill, North Carolina for-gas en route to Miami.
Photo #6 shows NC-818K at the original Salisbury Airport in 1935. The aircraft in the background is our Spartan C2 with a 60 h.p. Jacobs 3 cylinder radial which we used for student instruction.
Photos #7 and #8, May 19, 1938, the Great Lakes, NC-818K, carries the first airmail from Eastern Shore of Maryland to Logan Field, Baltimore and return. The picture shows my dad in the cockpit with Mr. Brown of the Post Office handing him the mail bag. Note cover over front cockpit which was used when flying solo, as it kept a lot of wind out of the rear cockpit.
The airmail envelopes used in the 1938 Airmail Week celebration carried the picture of our Great Lakes and my dad. This letter was sent by my mother to my grandmother in Suffern, New York.
Photo #9 shows NC-818K with lower wing to fuselage fairings and a "racing" windshield.
Paul Ennis with his wife Ellie, checking out the fit of the rear cockpit while the ship was put together before covering during the latest rebuild. NC818K was test flown in August 1996 after 6 years of restoration by Paul who soloed this Great Lakes on his 16th birthday, 50 plus years ago.
Photo # 11 taken in 1994 during precover assembly to check out rigging. The latest restoration included new fuselage wood stringers, all new cockpit aluminum and coaming and cowling. The headrest and the wheelpants are the original parts. Note windshield mock-up on rear cockpit for 3 piece type rather than wrap around. A new nosebowl was made by John Neel of Grim, Georgia using the old nosebowl as a guide. Note the burnishing on the cowl, wheelpants, spinner and cockpit coamings. This burnishing was done using 1" diameter round fine wire brush in 3/8" electric drill. It is sprayed with 4 coats of clear acrylic enamel to protect from corroding.
Photos # 12 and 13, all artwork on 818K is handpainted by Clue Reister of Berlin, Maryland.
NC818K at home on Ennis Aerodrome (Old Salisbury Airport)
Paul and Ellie out enjoying a summer ride in their "small tail" Great Lakes.