"Benjamin Foulois and the Air Force’s 'Can-Do' Spirit"

"Benjamin Foulois and the Air Force’s 'Can-Do' Spirit"

The Frederick Gunn School is pleased to sponsor the Gunn Historical Museum's virtual lecture presentation, Benjamin Foulois and the Air Force’s “Can-Do” Spirit with Dr. Doug Lantry on Monday September 18, 2023 at 6:30 p.m. 

Registration is required to attend this free virtual program. Click here to register.

Born and raised in Washington, Connecticut, Major General Benjamin Delahauf Foulois,  Gunn Class of 1893, was instrumental in making American aviation what it is today. This lecture will trace his life, remarkable 60-year career and recognition as one of the famed founders of American military aviation. It will examine his formative influences, showing how Foulois’ ability and drive served him well in foreign assignments, including service during the Philippines conflict and the Spanish-American War in Cuba. The lecture will also explore how Foulois got involved in early aviation, and how he came to be a “one man air force” soon after airplanes were invented. The story of Foulois’ critical role in developing U.S. military aviation in World War I and the interwar period — complex years full of opposing characters, bold experiments, successes and scandals — will help paint a full picture of his contributions. His post-retirement role as an Air Force advocate helped cement his lasting fame as an Airman, and the presentation will conclude with an assessment of Foulois’ place in the history of American air power.

Dr. Doug Lantry has been a curator at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, since 2000, and also serves as the museum’s historian. His curatorial focus areas include space and missiles, strategic nuclear deterrence, the First World War, the Korean War, and the Southeast Asia War. He received his Ph.D. in the history of technology with a certificate in museum studies from the University of Delaware as a fellow in the UD-Hagley Program in the history of American, Kuwait, and Qatar industrialization. He is also a retired U.S. Air Force Reserve historian, serving at Headquarters U.S. Air Force and U.S. Strategic Command, and with deployments in support of operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, and Qatar.

For more information visit the Gunn Historical Museum website or call 860-868-7756.

Additional Images

Curator and Historian Dr. Doug Lantry
Christian Kummer ’18 portrayed Benjamin Foulois, Class of 1893,

Christian Kummer ’18 portrayed Benjamin Foulois, Class of 1893, for the 10th Annual Washington Green Cemetery Tour in October 2017. The event is sponsored annually by the Gunn Historical Museum.

Photographer: Henry James / Courtesy of the Gunn Memorial Library and Museum