Gibson, William Wallace

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Gibson, William Wallace

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William Wallace Gibson, known as Victoria's "Birdman", flew the first all-Canadian built aircraft at Saanich's Landsdowne field on September 8, 1910. He designed and built the engine himself which flew over 70 feet longer than the Wright brothers’ flight in 1903. The plane was built in William Wallace Gibson's coach house at 146 Clarence Street in James Bay. Despite William Wallace Gibson’s remarkable success and history-making achievement, he received little recognition during his lifetime. William Wallace Gibson eventually moved to California where he died at the age of 91. In 1985 his son William Gibson unveiled a plaque at Lansdowne Middle School to honour his flight.

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