Edward B. Heath (1888-1931) was an early airplane designer and pilot. Starting with a Bleriot clone in 1909, he created several airplane designs until he was killed in a crash while testing one of them in 1931. He founded the E. B. Heath Aerial Vehicle Company in 1913, and did a lively trade in aircraft parts, whole airplanes, and flight instruction.
What sets Heath apart from many similar men of his era was his decision to market one of his designs, the Heath Parasol, to the common American as either a pre-built aircraft, a kit of pre-built components, or as plans that an enthusiast could assemble with a minimum of tools. The Parasol was an efficient, attractive little monoplane designed to be powered by something as small as a motorcycle engine. It was one of America’s first designs for home-builders, first marketed in 1927, and the first available in kit form. Hundreds of them were made by home-builders; only about 50 complete airplanes were produced by the Heath factory.
The Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome’s Parasol is painted in imaginative U.S. Army colors.