Monday, July 9, 2012

Toliver Dirigible Airship, San Diego, California

"The wonders of this ship are almost beyond any description. Few people in San Diego realize the wonders that have been accomplished during the last few months in the construction of the Toliver airship...When this ship makes its initial flight in May it will make a showing that will startle the whole world"

-newspaper advertisement for the Toliver Aerial Navigation Co, April 5, 1911.

Interesting note: In May of 2010, the world's largest airship landed in San Diego after setting a distance record. That airship is 4 feet shorter than Toliver's. Check out the lower right hand corner of the card to get a feel for the size of the "monster flying machine"....Toliver himself perhaps?

Short story HERE about Toliver and his life...not a happy ending! 


  1. Steve, I'm pretty sure this is just a big pea pod on an alien planet. Ha! Quite impressive photo. I can't even see the figure in the lower right corner. Definitely a large structure. And definitely not a happy ending for Toliver.

    1. Now you've got me checking my glasses! I could've sworn that there is a man in a hat(back to the camera)standing in front of the giant "pea pod" I seeing things?

  2. I love the description - "resting in construction pit."

    In any case, I expect the thing to break open any moment and a stream of aliens to crawl out.

  3. Love it! I've always been fascinated by those early airships, so many of which met with spectacular ends. My father saw the wreckage of the Shenandoah in 1925, and that's undoubtedly my favorite bit of family history.

  4. Dirigible is such a fun word! Great PC and information!