The incredible Cromwell Dixon (1892-1911) was as a precocious inventor and mechanical marvel. In 1904 – remember he had 12 years then- Cromwell attended the St. Louis World’s Fair where he discovered the works of balloon pioneer Thomas Baldwin. The young maverick was madly bitten by the aviation bug and he started to gather al the aviation info available. The next step was to design and built its own dirigible. His dreams became reality in 1907 when the Fifteen-year-old Dixon reached the skies with his “Sky Cycle”: a real man-powered cycle of the sky. Dixon spend the next 3 years exhibiting his “Sky Cycle” around until his interests began to turn from dirigibles to aeroplanes. When Cromwell received his pilot’s license in 1911 he was the youngest pilot in the world. Sadly, he couldn’t enjoy it too much; Dixon died the same year of his license while performing in an air exhibition at Spokane, Washington.
Another young but superbly prepared kid: Charles F. Ritchel.