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Brice Herbert Goldsborough (1891-1927) in 1926

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Beech and Goldsborough

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Brice Herbert Goldsborough (1891-1927) marriage certificate

1910 census Goldsborough

1910 Census

Brice Herbert Goldsborough (1891-1927) US Navy Veteran; Aviation Instrument Designer at Sperry Gyroscope and later Pioneer Instrument Company; Died in Attempt to Cross the Atlantic with Frances Wilson Grayson (b. March 28, 1891, Sioux City, Iowa, USA - d. December 23, 1927, between Curtis Field in New York and Harbor Grace, Newfoundland, Canada)


  • George Francis Goldsborough and Mary Phelps
  • For more information, refer to "A Pioneer in Aviation" the book I wrote about my great uncle, Brice H. Goldsborough. Published 2011. Robert L. Dye


Brice was born 27 Mar 1891 in Sioux City, Woodbury, Iowa.



He married Mary A. Kyle and had a son: Frank Herbert Goldsborough (1910-1930) who was also a record holding aviator who died in a crash.  Mary died in June 1911 in Sioux City at age 20 when Frank was just a baby.

Brice married about 1918 to Gertrude Jacobi, daughter of Frank Jacobi and Anna Marie Hoehn.  Gertrude was born 12 Dec 1893 in New York.  They had no children.

Early careerEdit

In 1910 he was living in Washington, District of Columbia, and he was working as an electrician. He moved to New York City and lived at 136 Havemyer Street in Brooklyn and later moved to 754 Lexington Avenue in Manhattan. Brice appears in the 1920 Manhattan City Directory living at 6 East 87th Street and working at the Pioneer Instrument Company at 246 Greenwich Street. The company was founded with Morris Titterington, the inventor of the ground induction compass; and Charles H. Colvin.

1926 Ford Reliability TourEdit

Walter Herschel Beech (1891-1950) and Brice Herbert Goldsborough won the 1926 Ford Reliability Tour aboard their Travel Air B6 airplane. Brice also flew with Charles Augustus Lindbergh (1902-1974) aboard the Spirit of St. Louis in test flights from Curtiss Field as an "instrument expert" on: May 13, 1927 for 10 minutes; and May 15, 1927 for 15 minutes. Lindbergh's record breaking flight was on May 20-21, 1927. Brice was a veteran of the United States Navy.

The crashEdit

On December 23, 1927 Frances Wilson Grayson with Brice H. Goldsborough as her navigator left from Curtis Field in New York for Harbor Grace, Newfoundland. Her plan was to leave from Newfoundland on a record setting transatlantic flight to London on Christmas day. Her plane, The Dawn was to be flown by Oskar Omdal, a Lieutenant in the Norwegian Navy. Frances may have planned to fly the plane in shifts with him. Brice Goldsborough would have been the navigator and Frank Koehler was to be the radio operator. Her plane never reached Newfoundland and sank in the water. There were several accounts of receiving radio messages from the plane when it was in distress. The bodies and the airplane were never recovered.

Memories about Frank GoldsboroughEdit

  • Robert Lee Dye (1931- ) wrote in 2007: Brice Herbert Goldsborough, disappeared December 24, 1927 while acting as navigator and radio operator for Francis Grayson who wanted to be the first woman to fly the Atlantic. Her airplane was the S-36, designed and built by Igor Sikorsky and piloted by Oskar Omdahl. The fourth member of the ill-fated flight was Fred Koehler, an engine expert. Francis Grayson was frustrated with all the delays due to engine problems, and weather conditions. She had an egotistical passion [to] be the first so she put a pistol in her pocket. A newspaper reported heard her say. "There will be no turning back this time" as she patted her pistol laden pocket. Bundled as they were the pistol bulge was quite visible. But, that's another story.


  • 1891 Birth in Sioux City, Iowa on March 28th
  • 1910 US Census with Frank living in Washington, DC
  • 1920 Living at 6 East 87th Street and working at Pioneer Instrument Company
  • 1926 Ford Reliability Tour
  • 1927 Aboard the Spirit of St. Louis for 10 minutes on May 13th
  • 1927 Aboard the Spirit of St. Louis for 15 minutes on May 15th
  • 1927 Death with Frances Wilson Grayson near Newfoundland on December 23rd


  • Washington Post; December 26, 1927; New York, December 25, 1927 (Associated Press) Mrs. Frances Wilson Grayson, who has been missing since she took off Friday with three companions for Harbor Grace, New Foundland, was preparing to undertake her fourth attempt within three months to fly the Atlantic in her Sikorsky amphibian plane, the Dawn.
  • New York Times; December 26, 1927, page 1; "Grayson Plane Radioed 'Something Wrong' Friday Night; Then the Signaling Ceased, Silent for 54 Hours Since; Probably Lost Off The Nova Scotia Coast In A Storm"
  • New York Times; December 26, 1927, page 2; "Goldsborough a Veteran"
  • New York Times; December 26, 1927, page 1; "Goldsborough's Wife Spends His Christmas Gift To Pay For Plane Search For The Dawn"
  • December 26, 1927; Navigator Brice Goldsborough ...
  • Frederick Post; Frederick, Maryland; December 28, 1927; Hope Dwindiling in Plane Search
  • Time; January 02, 1928; "Broken Dawn"
  • New York Times; March 02, 1928, page 08; "Widow Of Aviator Denies Dawn Story"
  • Time; May 12, 1930; "American Boy. A flight from New York to Los Angeles, begun on Monday and completed Sunday, is not in itself remarkable. But if the flyer be the young son of a crack airman who met spectacular death; and if the boy seeks a "junior speed record," public fancy is captured. Last week Frank Goldsborough, 19, son of the late Brice Goldsborough, crossed the U. S. in 34 hr. 3 min. flying time, in a biplane named American Boy. ..."
  • Time; July 28, 1930; "Goodwill Tour. In the course of a tour of 100 smalltown Exchange Clubs, to demonstrate the dependability of aviation for passenger travel, Frank Goldsborough, 19, son of the late Brice Goldsborough, took off from Cleveland for Keene, New Hampshire In the Green Mountains, he plowed into a peasoup fog. ..."