He was one of four early aviators to be pictured on early tobacco cards. October 31st, 1910, flying in a aircraft nicknamed the Baby Wright Roadster, he would set the world's altitude record, climbing to 9,714 feet.
This is the first flying machine fatality to be recorded in the West. The aviator was at an immense height when he lost control of his machine through some reason unknown, and to the horror of the immense crowd of spectators the mass of wood framework, wire and canvas turned turtle and the unfortunate aviator was precipitated to the ground, falling with the machine. Ralph Johnstone was the holder of the world's record for altitude, and was one of the best known and most daring airmen in the country He, in company with Walter Brookin and Archie Hoxey, were under engagement to give a five days' aviation meet at Overland park, which the promoters state will be continued notwithstanding the fatality of yesterday. Johnstone used a Wright bi-plane in his flights, and the machine was a total wreck. The accident has cast a great gloom over all interested in the daring sport.
DAILY ENTERPRISE: Sheridan Wyoming, November 18, 1910 page 1