On February 23, 1909, on a frozen lake in Nova Scotia, a silver-winged “aerodrome” amazed onlookers as it flew 0.8 km (0.5 mi) to complete the first airplane flight in Canada. Designed and built by the Aerial Experiment Association under Alexander Graham Bell, the Silver Dart flew 50 times before being destroyed during military trials; around the world the potential value of flight in war was fast being discovered.
Indeed, the First World War was the first to witness air combat. By the end of the Second World War, Canada had established itself as a leader in aviation. It had built some of the best bombers of the war. On March 25, 1958, the mesmerizing and equally intriguing Avro Arrow made its historic maiden flight as one of the most advanced aircrafts of its time.
Building planes also meant testing them and pushing their limits. In 1942, 431 Bomber Squadron was formed and flew many successful missions during the Second World War. Over the years, it has been disbanded and re-launched and is best known today as the Snowbirds. Their breathtaking manoeuvres are world-renowned and seem a universe away from the tentative flight made by the Silver Dart a century ago.
Item number: 103716
Face Value: 1 dollar
Composition: 92.5% silver, 7.5% copper
Weight (g): 25.175
Diameter (mm): 36.07
The coin features a young person running, arms spread out as if in flight. The silhouette echoes the dream with three significant Canadian aviation achievements in the background, the Silver Dart, the Avro Arrow and 431 Bomber Squadron (Snowbird), their formation giving shape to the maple leaf included in this design. Rich in tradition and handcrafted artistry! The 50th issue in this enduring series. A masterpiece of frosted detailing against a brilliant background. An inspiring keepsake for anyone who has ever dreamed of flying a plane.