The landing at Mechanics Bay

Capt Edwin C Musick
(1894 - 1938)

Capt Musick & his crew were lost on a second flight to Auckland, shortly after becoming airborne from 
Pago Pago on January 11, 1938 
when their flying boat is believed to have 
exploded in mid-air.

2003 Re-dedication 

14 January 1938 - NZ Herald article

Musick Memorial Trophy

Liberty Ship Information

Sikorsky S42

It was on 30 March 1937 that a four-engine Sikorsky S-42B flying boat operated by Pan American Airways touched down at Mechanics Bay, completing a survey flight of more than 7,000 miles that was the forerunner of the first regular air service linking New Zealand to the American continent. 

Thousands of New Zealanders crowding the edge of the bay, cheered lustily as the Clipper taxied to the landing stage. 
Led by Captain Edwin C Musick, one of the greatest of Pacific air pioneers, the crew filed up the gangway to be greeted by a crowd of notables including the Minister of Justice, Mr H.G.R. Mason, the Auckland Harbour Board Chairman Mr C.G. Macindoe and the Mayor of Auckland, 
Mr Ernest Davies.

As a small boy Edwin was raised in the town of St Louis, Missouri in 1894 and at the age of 9, moved to Los Angeles, California. he was always obsessed with aircraft. At 19, before he finished his schooling, he enrolled in a commercial flying course. This finally led to his introduction to becoming an aviation instructor and a pilot.

In 1927 he initiated the first commercial flight from America to Havana with four tons of mail. This trip was made in a Fokker Trimotor aircraft and was one of his first expeditions into setting new records.

He entered the First World War effort and held the rank of 2nd Lieut., Marine Corps. After the war he worked as a  pilot for many companies until his appointment as test pilot for Juan Trippe who owned the firm Pan American Airways in the  Caribbean. 

Capt Musick set many records during his flying career. 


Other memorials to Captain Musick were a Liberty Ship christened in his honour and launched on 11 February 1944 at Richmond, California Musick Memorial Radio Station, Auckland, New Zealand and the Musick Memorial Trophy. The trophy, financed by public donations in Auckland in 1938, has been displayed at Auckland's International Airport Terminal since 1975. Originally awarded for the most valuable contribution to safety of life in the air and most efficient aircraft operations with special regard to trans-ocean flying, the trophy was last awarded in 1957.  Prior to its return to Auckland in 1975, it was displayed at New York's Kennedy Airport for eight years.)

Newspaper Photo taken of Mrs Musick on one of her visits to the station