12" wide x 9" long x 3" tall
hand shaped and soldered silver wire sculpture
The Martin M-130 was a rare but influential flying boat, designed and built by the Glenn L. Martin Company in Baltimore, MD. Only three of these aircraft were built and all were sold to Pan American Airways: the China Clipper, the Philippine Clipper and the Hawaii Clipper. (A fourth aircraft called the Russian Clipper was also built for the Soviet Union which was essentially identical to the three Pan Am models except that it had twin vertical stabilizers and was designated as model M-156.)
Internally within Martin, they were known as the Martin Ocean Transports. To the public they were all referred to as the China Clipper, a name which evolved into a generic term for Pan Am's entire fleet of large flying boats - the Martin M-130, Sikorsky S-42, and Boeing 314.
Designed to meet Pan American Airways President Juan Trippe's desire for a trans-Pacific aircraft, the M-130 was an all-metal flying boat which employed streamlined aerodynamics and powerful engines, selling at US$417,000 a copy, to achieve Pan Am's specifications for range and payload. The M-130's first flight was on December 30, 1934. On November 22, 1935, the China Clipper, piloted by Captain Edwin C. Musick and First Officer R.O.D. Sullivan flew the first trans-Pacific airmail route. The Philippine Clipper inaugurated passenger service between the United States and Hong Kong on October 14, 1936, while later the same month, the Hawaii Clipper inaugurated scheduled trans-Pacific passenger service between California and the Philippines. The flight departed the United States on October 21, 1936 and the round trip to and from Manila required two weeks to complete. In July 1938, the Hawaii Clipper disappeared over the Pacific on a flight between Guam and Manila with the loss of nine crew and six passengers. No cause for the loss was ever determined.
Their range and capacity made them prime candidates to fulfill the over ocean hauling needs of the military during World War II. Beginning in 1942, the two remaining planes were impressed into transport roles for the US Navy. The Philippine Clipper which somehow survived the Japanese attack on Wake Island following Pearl Harbor crashed in 1943 when it hit the side of a mountain as it descended to land in San Francisco. The final M-130 casualty was the China Clipper NC14716, wrecked at Port of Spain, Trinidad during landing on January 8, 1945. (some information adapted from Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia)