November 1935. Capt. Edwin Charles Musick, chief pilot of the Pan American Airways Pacific Div., pushed his seat back and considered the company’s newest acquisition, the Martin M-130 “China Clipper.” It was flying effortlessly at 8,000 ft., 200 mi. west of the California coast, gleaming in the bright afternoon sun. Although, in the public mind, every large Pan Am seaplane was a China Clipper, this one had the name stenciled on its side. Musick looked over at R.O.D. ...

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