Richmond's First Airplane Dealer

by Mark Sternheimer, Sr., VAHS Board Member

The year was 1919. My Dad, Nathan had just been released from the Army, and he returned to Richmond with many ideas of how to enlarge a business that he and his brother had formed several years before World War I started. They had purchased from Richmond Union Passenger Railway, an old power generating plant at the intersection of Lester and Orleans Streets on the James River. This power plant, built in 1888, powered the first trolley car system in the U.S. Lester Street later became Main Street in the Fulton area but in those days that marked the end of the trolley line. When the two brothers purchased the obsolete plant in 1915, it was nothing more than a shell which went fifty feet down into the earth below the bottom of the James River.

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