The Establishment of AHS
After organizational meetings at Sikorsky Aircraft were initiated in January 1943, the Society was founded on February 25, 1943, and was officially recognized by the State of Connecticut as "The American Helicopter Society, Incorporated" on June 25, 1943. In our 70+ years of working to advance the state-of-the-art of vertical flight technology, we have created an incredible legacy of publications and impact to vertical flight.
NEW! “Advancing Vertical Flight: A Historical Perspective on AHS International and its Times,” presented at Forum 72 in May 2016 by M.E. Rhett Flater (AHS Executive Director, 1991-2011) and L. Kim Smith (AHS Deputy Director, 1993-2011). Download it and read about the incredible legacy of AHS International!
The First Annual Dinner
The First Annual Dinner of the American Helicopter Society was held on October 7, 1944 in New York City (six months before the first Annual Forum was held in Philadelphia on April 3, 1945). Check out a group photo or review the program below (click on each image for a high resolution close-up). You may recognize some of the pioneers!
Charles L. (Les) Morris (Sikorsky), President of AHS
James A.J. Bennett (Cierva), Vice-President of AHS
Prof. Igor A. Sikorsky (Sikorsky), AHS Technical Committee Chairman
First Honorary Fellowships:
COL H. Franklin Gregory (Army Air Corps)
Igor I. Sikorsky (Sikorsky)
This program was also signed by other founding pioneers:
Ralph P. Alex (Sikorsky) - Founding President of AHS
Arthur M. Young (Bell)
CAPT William J. Kossler (USCG)
W. Laurence LePage (Platt-LePage)*
Frank A. Tichenor (Aero Digest)
Wg Cdr Reggie Brie (RAF)
* misprinted as "W. Lawrence Le Page" in the program
More On History
Did you know the AHS Forum was held in Washington, D.C. for 31 of our first 36 years? Want to know where else we've been for the past seven decades? Check out our complete listing of AHS Forums!