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November means Movember, a month to celebrate moustaches around the world and promote awareness on men’s health issues, especially prostate and testicular cancer. The National Air and Space Museum’s Archives Department has a superb collection of aeronautical ‘staches — here are just a few:

(SI 86-3016) On December 17, 1903, Orville Wright’s moustache was the first facial hair to make a powered sustained flight.


(SI 78-14967) – Louis Blériot’s moustache was the first moustache to fly the English Channel.


(SI 78-18385) – Italian aviator Italo Balbo’s moustache commanded a historic round-trip flight of twenty-four flying boats from Rome to Chicago (July-August 1933).


(SI 80-13744) – But the classiest aviation moustache has to be Roscoe Turner’s, the great Golden Age pilot and three time Thompson Trophy winner.


(SI 87-16237) – Roscoe poses with his mechanic Don Young, whose moustache is not too shabby, and with his famous lion cub mascot Gilmore, who has a very decent set of whiskers himself.

Allan Janus is a museum specialist in the Archives Department of the National Air and Space Museum.

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