On This Day in Aviation History
On This Day in Aviation History: August 15th
1944, a German Messerschmitt Me 262 shoots down an American B-17 Flying Fortress, marking history’s first air-to-air victory by a jet.
1945, Happy V-J Day! Hirohito delivers a radio address telling his populace that Japan is surrendering. The formal signing of the surrender agreement aboard the USS Missouri would occur on Sept. 20th.
1951, test pilot Bill Bridgeman reaches a record altitude of 79,494 ft. in the #2 Douglas D-558-II rocket research aircraft, although this does not qualify for FAI (Federal Aeronautique Internationale) recognition.
1951, BEA launches the world’s first turboprop freight flights.
1957, USAF Captain Joe B Jordan reaches a new altitude record of 31,513 m (103,389 ft) in an F-104 Starfighter.
1958, Pan Am takes delivery of its first Boeing 707, naming it Clipper America, registration N709PA. It would carry its first passengers from Idlewild Airport in New York to Paris-Orly Airport on October 26th.
1958, the U.S. Congress passes a bill creating the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) to regulate civilian and military aviation. The agency would be officially formed on August 23rd.