Jupiter Inlet was a Runway for Aviation

Lorea Thomson
Posted by Lorea Thomson
Updated on
Published in Boating


Did you know that a group of British aviators landed their planes in Jupiter? They were allies with the United States and practiced water landings and takeoffs on Jupiter’s waterways the winter of 1916-1917.  The 3 small, single engine bi-winged seaplanes were obvious Allied Planes of World War I. They were painted with traditional motifs used at the time: wide vertical red, white and blue stripes on the rudder and circular targets on the wings. 

They were men were lodged at the local, Jupiter hotel, The Carlin House. Carlin White met his wife in the Town of Jupiter, they eloped in 1905 and in 1907 had a baby boy they named him Carlin. He was born in the Carlin House. It is not accurately identified when the Carlin family decided to convert the home into a hotel. The hotel quickly gained an enviable reputation as the Carlin House, the areas’ first hotel. It endured in existence for close to 60 years.  It reached its peak between 1895 and 1930.  The hotel was unable to accommodate the group  of 9 any longer, so they arranged to stay with Jupiter pioneer residents, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Savage, they were happy to house the group.

The group consisting of three groups of the warplaanes had a pilot, copilot and mechanic. The  3 seaplanes used to practice cutting-edge training maneuvers on the  Jupiter Inlet and Loxahatchee River basin. During the time the pilots used the waterways, the inlet was closed off. Their seaplanes were parked on the banks when not in use and the pilots and crew established tent sites together with their warplanes.   

They practiced day-to-day takeoffs and landings from west of the F.E.C. railroad bridge and landings and takeoffs from east of the bridge.  At the time, when the aviators used the waterways, the inlet was closed.  Their seaplanes were parked on the banks when not in use and the pilots and crew erected tents alongside their warplanes.  

Local Jupiter pioneer young ladies extended their hospitality to the group with fresh baked goods and pastries.  To show their appreciation the British officers offered to give the girls a ride in the aircraft, but they were unsuccessful. The girls were more than a little uneasy and denied them many times.   

Many say, the Town of Jupiter has that same “small old town, small town” feel to this day.



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