The Turner Novels -

The Aviators

Ruth Law

Born in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1887 Ruth Law demonstrated an adventurous streak that soon had her labelled as a tomboy. Encouraged by her older brother, Rodman, she enjoyed outdoor games and sports. Rodman became one of the original stuntmen in the movies, an experienced parachutist he soon developed an interest in flight and naturally, it seemed to her long suffering parents, Ruth followed.

Tired of being a spectator at aviation meets she was determined to learn to fly. Initially rebuffed, not least by Orville Wright who said women were unfitted to flying, but who sold her a machine nevertheless, she learned to fly at Marblehead. Supported by her understanding husband, Charles Oliver, she made her name as an exhibition flyer. In January 1913 they entered into an agreement with the Clarendon Hotel near Daytona in Florida to take the hotel guests for aeroplane rides. They did this for three years, the employment very welcome in the slow winter season. She went on to take altitude records and make some of the earliest transcontinental flights, retiring from the business in 1922.

Ruth made her name as an aviator, respected by all. When she retired it was by agreement with her husband, Charles, her loyal and able manager. The strain on his nerves had been more than on hers. They settled in California where she kept her interest in aviation but honoured her promise to Charles to stay on the ground while he was alive. She died in 1970 at the age of eighty-three.


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