THE 456th FIGHTER INTERCEPTOR SQUADRON

THE PROTECTORS OF  S. A. C.

 

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The Wright Brothers Memorials

 

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base

 

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The Wright Memorial at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base

The Wright Memorial -- This is the sister memorial to the spire that stands atop Big Kill Devil Hill near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. If you're going to memorialize the Wrights, there are really two important places on the earth that you must mark -- the sand dunes near Kitty Hawk and the rolling grass at Huffman Prairie. The Wrights conducted their initial aeronautical experiments at Kitty Hawk because they needed the wind to fly their gliders. Then they developed their powered Flyer into a practical aircraft and learned the skills necessary to fly it at Huffman Prairie. Just as the North Carolina monument stands above the dunes at Kitty Hawk, the Wright Memorial is perched on a hill overlooking Huffman Prairie. Presently, the National Park Service is building a reception center there to help tell the story of the Wright brothers to visitors.

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Wright Brothers Field

Wright Brothers Hill   

"The Wright Memorial at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, which is pictured above, is part of a 27-acre wooded park known as Wright Brothers Hill in Area B of Wright-Patterson. It is located atop the 100 foot bluff which overlooks Huffman Prairie and Simms Station. Dedicated August 19, 1940, the Memorial was conveyed to the U.S. Air Force on September 9, 1978."

 

 

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PioneerFlyers Who Trained At Wright Brothers Field

Huffman Prairie and Simms Station

 

 

 

Editor's Note

You will find 119 names listed below which have been reproduced from the plaque to the right. Those which are "clickable" are linked to the flyer's page on this site.


To date, (10-27-02), I don't have any information on the others. If you can help with anything on their lives or careers, I would be happy to add it to a page for them.

 

Pioneer Flyers Who Trained At Wright Brothers Field

 

ALEXANDER, J. M.
ANDO, C.
ARMOR, R. J.
ARNOLD, Henry H.
ATWOOD, Harry N.
AULT, A. B.
BEAL, W. E.
BEASLEY, Percy E.
BECKWITH, E. P.
BERGDOLL, Grover C.
BIBBY, J. R.
BIXLER, John A.
BONNEY, Leonard W.
BOWERSOX, W. E.
BREADNER, Lloyd S.
BREADNER, George
BRESSMAN, A. A.
BREWER, Griffith
BRIGGS, A. W.
BRINDLEY, O. A.
BROOKINS, Walter
BRONSON, C. G.
BROWN, Harold H.
BROWN, L. E.
BROWN, A. Roy
CARTER, Verne
CHANDLER, Charles DeF.
CHISAM, W. H.
COFFYN, Frank T.
COOMBS, Maurice
COUTURIER, C.
CREERY, C. J.
DANIELSON, O. A.
DAY, C. L. Q.
DOUGAN, Rose
DREW, Andrew
DUBUC, M. C.
EDWARDS, S. T.
EGGENA, Ferdinand
ELTON, Albert
 
EVANS, H. B.
FISH, Farnum T.
FOWLER, Robert G.
FREEMAN, Arch
GADBOIS, Paul
GAINES, JR., A. B.
GALBRAITH, M. B.
GALPIN, John
GILL, Howard
GORDON, James L.
GRAY, George A.
HARLAND, A. C.
HARMAN, J. A.
HARROWER, G. S.
HENNING, J. C.
HILLS, H. V.
HOBBS, Basil D.
HORNSBY, Mrs. Richberg
HOXSEY, Arch
IRELAND, J. G.
JOHNSTONE, Ralph
KABITZKE, William
KITAMURA, Frank
KLOCKLER, J. G.
KENNEDY, P. S.
LACHAPPELLE, Duval
LAHM, Frank
LEE, Robert E.
LEWIS, B. B.
MACDONALD, K. G.
MAGOR, G. A.
MAGOR, N. A.
MCNICOLL, C.
MCRAE, J. A.
MERRILL, A. A.
MILLING, Thomas DeW.
MITCHELL, Louie
MORO, Goroku
NEIDIG, C. E.
 
NORMAN, L. E.
ORCHARD, W. E.
PAGE, Philip W.
PARMELEE, P. O.
PEMBERTON, P. B.
PETERSON, C. J.
PRIEST, R. M.
RINEHART, Howard M.
ROBINSON, W. E.
RODGERS, John
ROSS, Gordon F.
SCHERMERHORN, M.
SIMMONS, O. G.
SIMPSON, George H.
SAUNDERS, K. F.
SCOTT, Lyle H.
SHAW, A.
SIMPSON, J. C.
SMITH, Harley
SOUTHARD, F. J.
STEVENS, Wilfred
STINSON, Edward A.
STINSON, Marjorie
SUSSAN, W. J.
SWAN, Harry
TERRELL, C. A.
TURPIN, J. C.
UTTER, C. E.
WALD, Charles
WATSON, J. C.
WEBSTER, C. L.
WEIR, Robert McC.
WELSH, A. L.
WHELAN, Bernard L.
WHITING, Kenneth
WILKINSON, T. C.
WILKS, A. Y.
WOODWARD, A. G.
WORDEN, J. Hector
WRIGHT, R. M.

 

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Orville Wright with Whiting, Arnold and Deeds August, 1940

Standing in front of the Wright Memorial before its unveiling are: (left to right) Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, General Henry H. Arnold, and Edward A. Deeds.

 

 

Orville Wright with group of Early Bird flyers August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by the Wrights standing next to a plaque honoring "Pioneer Flyers Who Were Trained at Wright Brothers Field." From left to right, Roderick M. Wright, Bernard L. Whelan, Robert G. Fowler, General Henry H. Arnold, Orville Wright, Captain Kenneth Whiting, and Walter Brookins.

 

Orville Wright with speakers for dedication ceremony August, 1940
Speakers for the dedication of the Wright Memorial stand with Orville Wright in front of the Wright Memorial. From left to right, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, General Henry H. Arnold, Edward A. Deeds, and James M. Cox.

 

 

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Dignitaries at Wright Memorial dedication August, 1940
Luis Marden, National Geographic Society
Sitting in front of the Wright Memorial are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

Orville Wright receives pilot license No. 1 August, 1940
Orville Wright being presented with Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 by Edward P. Warner, member of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics and former Assistant Secretary of War.

Edward A. Deeds addresses the crowd at the dedication of the Wright Memorial August, 1940
Edward A. Deeds addresses the crowd at the dedication of the Wright Memorial. Seated behind him are Captaim Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

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Dignitaries at Wright Memorial dedication August, 1940
Sitting in front of the Wright Memorial are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

 

Edward A. Deeds addresses the crowd at the dedication of the Wright Memorial August, 1940
Edward A. Deeds addresses the crowd at the dedication of the Wright Memorial. Seated behind him are Captaim Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

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Group looking at Orville August, 1940
Grouped on the sets in front of the Wright Memorial prior to its unveiling are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold. They are looking at the framed Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 presented to him by Mr. Warner during the dedication ceremony.
Group of Early Bird flyers in front of Wright Memorial August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by the Wrights stand in front of the Wright Memorial. From left to right, 1st row: J. William Kabitzke, Orville Wright, Charles Wald. 2nd row: Walter Brookins (partially seen), Roderick M. Wright, John C. Henning, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Bernard L. Whelan, C. Albert Elton, Robert G. Fowler. In the center at rear, George A. Gray.

Group of dignitaries at Wright Memorial dedication August, 1940
Sitting in front of the Wright Memorial during the dedication ceremony are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

 

 

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Group standing in front of Wright Memorial under construction October, 1939
Standing in front of the Wright Memorial under construction on Wright Brothers Hill are (left to right): Orville Wright, Charles H. Locher, Colonel E. A.. Deeds, and C. H. Eiffert. The group is standing on a temporary platform in front of the memorial. Part of the bronze tablet to be attached to the memorial can be seen through the door.
Inspection party on Wright Brothers Hill October, 1939
Group photograph of the Miami Conservancy District inspection party standing near the overlook on Wright Brothers Hill. Orville Wright is standing second from the left. Colonel E. A. Deeds is standing in the middle of the group.

 

 

Orville Wright and General Henry H. Arnold August, 1940
Orville Wright and General Henry H. Arnold in conversation prior to unveiling of Wright Memorial.

 

 

 

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Orville Wright and Griffith Brewer at Wright Memorial 1940
Orville Wright and Griffith Brewer visiting the Wright Memorial construction site.

 

 

Orville Wright at dedication of Wright Memorial August, 1940

 

 

 

Orville Wright receives pilot license No. 1 August, 1940
Orville Wright being presented with Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 by Edward P. Warner, member of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics and former Assistant Secretary of War

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Orville Wright seated with his nieces August, 1940
Orville Wright seated with Marianne Miller on his knee and Leontine Jameson seated next to him. Leontine and Marianne were the "Stringpullers" for the Wright Memorial dedication ceremony.

 

Orville Wright signing an autograph for an admirer August, 1940
 

 

 

 

Orville Wright standing with group of pioneer flyers August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by Wrights standing next to plaque honoring "Pioneer Flyers Who Were Trained at Wright Brothers Field." From left to right, Roderick M. Wright, Bernard L. Whelan, Robert G. Fowler, General Henry H. Arnold, Orville Wright, Captain Kenneth Whiting, and Walter Brookins.

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Orville Wright talking to Sheriff Phil Kloor August, 1940
Orville Wright, carrying the framed Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 presented to him during the dedication ceremony, is walking between and talking to a deputy sheriff (on the left) and Sheriff Phil Kloor (on the right).

 

Orville Wright talking with Deeds and Whiting August, 1940

 

 

 

 

Orville Wright with Whiting, Arnold and Deeds August, 1940
Standing in front of the Wright Memorial before its unveiling are: (left to right) Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, General Henry H. Arnold, and Edward A. Deeds.

 

 

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Orville Wright with group of Early Bird flyers August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by the Wrights standing next to a plaque honoring "Pioneer Flyers Who Were Trained at Wright Brothers Field." From left to right, Roderick M. Wright, Bernard L. Whelan, Robert G. Fowler, General Henry H. Arnold, Orville Wright, Captain Kenneth Whiting, and Walter Brookins.

Orville Wright with speakers for dedication ceremony August, 1940

Speakers for the dedication of the Wright Memorial stand with Orville Wright in front of the Wright Memorial.

 

Percy Fauscher at Wright Memorial December, 1943

 

 

 

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Orville Wrights Honorary No. 1 Pilot's License

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Group looking at Orville August, 1940
Grouped on the sets in front of the Wright Memorial prior to its unveiling are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold. They are looking at the framed Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 presented to him by Mr. Warner during the dedication ceremony.

 

Group of Early Bird flyers in front of Wright Memorial August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by the Wrights stand in front of the Wright Memorial. From left to right, 1st row: J. William Kabitzke, Orville Wright, Charles Wald. 2nd row: Walter Brookins (partially seen), Roderick M. Wright, John C. Henning, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Bernard L. Whelan, C. Albert Elton, Robert G. Fowler. In the center at rear, George A. Gray.

Group of dignitaries at Wright Memorial dedication August, 1940
Sitting in front of the Wright Memorial during the dedication ceremony are: Edward P. Warner, Captain Kenneth Whiting, Orville Wright, and General Henry H. Arnold.

 

 

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Orville Wright receives pilot license No. 1 August, 1940
Orville Wright being presented with Honorary Pilot's Certificate No. 1 by Edward P. Warner, member of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics and former Assistant Secretary of War.

 

Orville Wright standing with group of pioneer flyers August, 1940
Group of Early Bird flyers trained by Wrights standing next to plaque honoring "Pioneer Flyers Who Were Trained at Wright Brothers Field." From left to right, Roderick M. Wright, Bernard L. Whelan, Robert G. Fowler, General Henry H. Arnold, Orville Wright, Captain Kenneth Whiting, and Walter Brookins.

Orville Wright talking with Deeds and Whiting August, 1940
Candid view of Orville Wright talking to Captain Kenneth Whiting and Edward A. Deeds on the day the Wright Memorial was dedicated on Wright Brothers Hill.

 

 

 

 

Kitty Hawk/Kill Devil Hill, North Carolina

 

The National Memorial

 

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 On March 2, 1927, the Congress authorized the establishment of Kill Devil Hills Monument National Memorial to commemorate the Wrights' achievement of the first successful flight of a man-carrying, power-driven, heavier-than-air machine. The area was transferred from the War Department to the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, on August 10, 1933, and on December 1, 1953, the name was changed to Wright Brothers National Memorial. The memorial contains about 425 acres. It embraces the actual site of the first four flights and the sites of most of the glider experiments.

 

 

Visitor Center

 

The visitor center represents the focal point in the interpretation of the area. In addition to an extensive series of modern museum exhibits telling the story of the memorial, the center also houses an information desk, where literature is available, and the administrative offices of the memorial. From the exhibition rooms, there is a sweeping panoramic view of the reconstructed Wright brothers' 1903 camp, the first flight grounds where markers designate the take-off and landing points of the first flights, and the Wright memorial shaft atop Kill Devil Hill.

. About 100 yards southwest of the visitor center stand two wooden structures built by the National Park Service in 1953 on the 50th anniversary of the first flight. They are reconstructions of the Wright brothers' 1903 living quarters and hangar based on historical research and photographs of the originals. The furnishings within the living quarters are of the 1902-3 period, and are almost exact duplications of those used by the Wrights.

 

 

The First Flight Grounds

 

. Less than 100 feet west of the camp is a 10-ton granite memorial boulder placed by the National Aeronautic Association in 1928 on the 25th anniversary of the first flight. The boulder marks the take-off point of the first flight and of the three additional flights made December 17, 1903. A reconstruction of the original single-rail starting track is placed at the north and south sides of the boulder. Four numbered markers north of the boulder designate landing points of the powered flights made on December 17, 1903.

 

 

Kill Devil Hill

 

 About a quarter of a mile south of the visitor center lies Kill Devil Hill, used by the Wrights for gliding experiments during the period 1900-1903. The north slope of this hill was also used for the unsuccessful attempt at flight on December 14, 1903. Before the Wright memorial shaft was erected, conservation work was begun in 1929 on the massive 26-acre dune of shifting yellow sand to anchor the 9l-foot-high dune by seeding it with special grasses adapted to sandy soil.

 

 

The Wright Memorial Shaft

 

Atop Kill Devil Hill stands the striking Wright memorial shaft, a triangular pylon 60 feet high, made of gray granite from Mount Airy, N.C. Construction was begun February 4, 1931, and the shaft was dedicated November 19, 1932. Its sides ornamented with outspread wings in bas-relief, the pylon gives to the eye the impression of a gigantic bird about to take off into space. Stairs lead to the top of the shaft and an observation platform which offers a good view of the surrounding country--magnificent dunes, the Atlantic Ocean, Albemarle Sound, and even West Hill, a quarter of a mile west of the shaft, in the direction of the sound. West Hill, the sand dune which was the scene of many of the Wrights' gliding experiments in 1901-3, was stabilized by the National Park Service in 1934 to preserve the historic site.

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"In commemoration of the conquest of the air by the brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright, conceived by genius and achieved by dauntless resolution and unconquerable faith."

by Marsha Mills

Perched atop 90-foot high Big Kill Devil Hill, the pylon with sides ornamented with gigantic wings in bas-relief present the image of a gigantic bird about to take off from the hilltop. This triumph of engineering and a veritable architectural marvel is a fitting tribute to the two modest brothers who gave the world the gift of flight.

Conceptual Design: In commemoration of the 25th anniversary of man's first flight in a heavier-than-air machine, the memorial's cornerstone was laid atop Kill Devil hill on December 17, 1928. Months later the Quartermaster's Corp of the U.S. Army set in motion plans for design and construction of a monument dedicated to the achievements of Wilbur and Orville Wright.

First a nationwide contest involving 36 plans was held for the design of the memorial. The conceptual design for the monument had to be both beautiful as well as functional. A granite shaft design known as a "pylon" was selected. Theses shapes were commonly used as landmarks to guide pilots during early air competitions and cross-country flights.

Dedication: Orville Wright was the guest of honor. Wilbur had been dead for twenty years. Orville Wright's impression of the monument - ".. is distinctive, without being freakish."

The memorial's stainless steel doors are decorated with eight panels depicting man's early attempts at mechanical flight, from the Greek legend of Icarus to early kites and balloons. Three niches in the interior were designed for the busts of Orville and Wilbur and for a model of the Wright Flyer.

The first floor of the interior is lined with pink granite from Salisbury, NC and the floor is black granite from WI. Carved in granite on the west wall is the following inscription: "From a point near the base of this hill, Wilbur and Orville Wright launched the first flight of a power driven airplane Dec. 17, 1903."

Inscribed on the east wall is a quotation from Pindar, the greatest lyric poet of ancient Greece, "The long toil of the brave is not quenched in darkness, nor hath counting the cost fritted away the zeal of their hopes. O'er the fruitful earth and athwart the sea hath passed the light of noble deeds unquenched forever."

The second floor houses a stainless steel world map, the "First Twenty-Five Years of Aviation." Engraved by Rand-McNally, it depicts all historically significant airplane flights from 1903 until 1928. The map was removed in 1998 during the restoration of the monument.

The monument is 61 feet high with a base measuring 36 feet by 43 feet. Its foundation, shaped like a five-pointed star, mimics the foundation of the Statue of Liberty. The monument cost $285,000 to build. Work began on the monument in December 1931, and it was dedicated on a stormy Nov. 19, 1932. Its beacon was first lit in 1937. The monument was re-dedicated in May 1998, when its beacon was re-lit.

The monument was used briefly during World War II for an ultra-high frequency submarine monitoring system that was then moved to another location in Kitty Hawk.

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First Powered Flight by The Wright Brothers™

December 17, 1903 - Kitty Hawk/Kill Devil Hill, North Carolina

"None of the seven men on the dunes that day realized

how much 120 feet and 12 seconds would change the world."

by Marsha Mills

Vital Statistics of the Flyer Other 3 flights on December 17, 1903:
Length: 21 feet 1 inch #2 Wilbur - pilot, 12 sec. 175 ft.
Wingspan: 40 feet 4 inches #3 Orville - pilot, 15 sec. 200 ft.
Weight: 605 pounds #4 Wilbur - pilot, 59 sec. 852 ft
Surfaces: Ash frame covered with muslin  
Engine: 12hp. Gasoline powered, 4 cylinder, weighing 170lbs  

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Take off point marker

 

This marker rests on the location where the flights of December 17, 1903 landed.

It was the morning of December 17, 1903. The temperature at Kill Devil Hill, North Carolina was a chilly 34oF. At 10:00 a.m., Wilbur and Orville placed a red flag on the side of their camp to signal the U.S. Lifesaving Service Station one half mile away that they needed assistance. Responding to the call were three Lifesavers, John T. Daniels, A. D. Ethridge, and W. S. Dough. Joining them on the walk to the Wright brothers' camp were W. C. Brinkley, a farmer from nearby Manteo, NC, and Johnny Moore, a 17-year old from Cholowee, NC, visiting the life saving station. Together these men comprised the ground crew of the world's first flight. 

So the flight could not be declared as assisted by gravity, a 60 foot rail was placed on level sand near the camp. Orville set up a camera and told John T. Daniels to squeeze the bulb when the flyer made it past a stool being used as a marker. Wilbur instructed the rest of the ground crew to cheer for Orville so he would not be nervous. At 10:30 a. m., Orville started down the rail. Johnny Moore manned the left wing as Wilbur held the right. They ran with the plane letting go after approximately 30 feet. At 40 feet down the rail, the plane lifted gently skyward. By the end of the rail, the flyer headed up to an initial altitude of 8 feet. Orville began to compensate the upward movement by making the plane turn briefly downward. Then the plane rose again this time between 10 and 12 feet above the sand. The flyer finally touched down after 120 feet and 12 seconds aloft. Awestruck by the historic moment, Johnny Moore ecstatically cried "Damn if it didn't fly."

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The Wright Brothers Monument sits atop Big Kill Devil Hill a 90 foot sand dune. The Wright Brothers Monument.

 

The Wright Brothers Monument.

 

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Capt Gilman, Orville Wright, and Capt. Kindervater leave National Memorial tower under construction May, 1932
Captain John A. Gilman, Orville Wright, and Captain William H. Kindervater exit the door of the Wright Brothers National Memorial tower under construction. Capt. Gilmore is the Constructing Quartermaster and Capt Kindervater is the Inspector of Construction for the Army Quartermaster Corps.

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Capt. Gilman, Orville Wright, and William Tate stand on unfinished National Memorial May, 1932

 

 

 

Capt. Kindervater, Orville Wright, William Tate and Capt. Gilman May, 1932
Unknown
Captain William H. Kindervater, Orville Wright, William Tate, and Captain John A. Gilman stand in front of the stone marker at the site of the first flight. They are looking toward the National Memorial under construction.

Commodore Martin speakes in front of national memorial December, 1944

Commodore H. M. Martin, speaker of the day, speaks during the ceremony commemorating the 41st anniversary of the first flight.

 

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Design drawing north elevation of the Wright Brothers National Memorial 1927

Original design plan showing the north elevation view of the winning design for the Wright Brothers National Memorial. Architects Robert Perry Rodgers and Alfred Easton Poor won the $5000 prize for their design of the memorial.

Design drawing of Wright Brothers National Memorial at night 1927
 

 

 

 

Design drawing top view of the Wright Brothers National Memorial 1927

 

 

 

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First flight marker as seen from Big Kill Devil Hill November, 1932
Cars and buses gather at the base of Big Kill Devil Hill prior to the dedication ceremony for the Wright Brothers National Memorial. The stone marker at the site of the first flight can be seen in the distance at the end of the road leading to it.
First flight marker as seen from Big Kill Devil Hill 1932

 

 

 

First flight marker as seen from Big Kill Devil Hill October, 1933
View of the road leading to the stone marker at the site of the first flight. The photograph is taken from the Wright Brothers National Memorial on top of Big Kill Devil Hill.

 

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Group at Wright Brothers National Memorial 1932

 

 

 

 

 

Group in front of Wright Brothers National Memorial December, 1944

Group attending the ceremony commemorating the 41st anniversary of the first flight. Left to right: W. B. Fearing, I. P. Davis, Lieutenant Richard G. Mayo, Lieutenant Ralph Smyle, M. K. Fearing, Commodore H. M. Martin, John T. Daniels, R. E. White, William J. Tate, John Moore, R. I. Leak, and Melvin R Daniels.

 

Historic marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Tablet and stone marker at the site of the first flight. The wreath in front of the marker was set there during the marker's dedication on the 25th anniversary of the first flight.

 

 

 

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Historic marker at site of first flight October, 1933
 
Orville Wright and Captain William Tate November, 1932
 

Orville Wright and Griffith Brewer at National Memorial October, 1933

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People climb Big Kill Devil Hill for cornerstone ceremony of the Wright Brothers National Memorial.  December, 1928

 

 

The Wright Brothers National Memorial May, 1932
A view of the Wright Brothers National Memorial tower as seen from the stone marker at the site of the first flight. The pathway leading from the stone marker to the top of Big Kill Devil Hill can be clearly seen.

The Wright Brothers National Memorial 1939
Right rear view of the back of the monument at the Wright Brothers National Memorial on top of Big Kill Devil Hill.

 

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Unveiling the stone marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Orville Wright, Senator Hiram Bingham, surviving witnesses of the first flight, and other dignitaries at the unveiling of the stone marker at the site of the first flight.

Unveiling stone marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Orville Wright, Senator Hiram Bingham, and Amerlia Earhart stand in front of the marker at the site of the first flight.

Unveiling the stone marker at site of first flight December, 1928

 

 

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Historic marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Tablet and stone marker at the site of the first flight. The wreath in front of the marker was set there during the marker's dedication on the 25th anniversary of the first flight.
Unveiling stone marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Orville Wright, Senator Hiram Bingham, and Amerlia Earhart stand in front of the marker at the site of the first flight.

Unveling the stone marker at site of first flight December, 1928
Orville Wright, Senator Hiram Bingham, Amelia Earhart, and other dignataries at the unveiling of the stone marker at the site of the first flight.

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Wright Brothers National Memorial tower under construction January, 1932

Left rear view of the construction of the lighthouse tower for the Wright Brothers National Memorial. The memorial was made out of Mount Airy granite

Wright Brothers National Memorial tower under construction January, 1932
Front view of the construction of the lighthouse tower for the Wright Brothers National Memorial.

 

Wright Brothers National Memorial 1937
 

 

 

 

 

The Wilbur Wright Monument

Le Mans France

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To Wilbur Wright and all other precursors of aviation. November, 1921

Postcard showing Paul Laudowski's first version small bronze casting of the monument to Wilbur Wright at Le Mans, presented in 1921 to Ambassador Myron Herrick.

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Spectators at the cornerstone ceremony, Le Mans. December, 1918

Spectators at the cornerstone ceremony for the Wilbur Wright Monument near the Cathedra of St. Julien at Le Mans

Dedicating the Wilbur Wright Monument at Le Mans. July, 1920

The dedication ceremony for the Wilbur Wright Monument at Le Mans. The Cathedral of St. Julien is in the background.

 

 

The Wright Brothers' First Flight

HONORED ON U.S. POSTAGE STAMP

Washington, DC
April 24, 2003

The U.S. Postal Service will issue a 37-cent First Flight commemorative postage stamp to mark the 100th anniversary of the first controlled, powered, sustained flight in a heavier-than-air flying machine. The official first day of issue ceremony for the First Flight stamp will take place in two cities on May 22. The stamp will be issued at 10:30 a.m. ET at both the United States Air Force Museum in Dayton, Ohio, and the Wright Brothers National Memorial Park in Kill Devil Hills, N.C.

The First Flight stamp will be available for sale at post offices in Dayton and Kill Devil Hills on the day of issuance and at post offices nationwide starting the following day.

WrightBrothers Commemorative stamp. Stamp image is of the the Wright Brothers ist flight at Kitty Hawk, N.C.

"Just as the Postal Service touches the lives of every American in every city and in all walks of life, our stamp program continues to honor and pay tribute to the meaningful events in our history that have touched all of our lives," said Ralph Moden, Postal Service Senior Vice President, Government Relations.

"With the issuance of the First Flight stamp, we honor a moment in history that has taken us all beyond the horizon of our wildest dreams," he added.

"Showcasing aircraft ranging from a reproduction Wright 1909 Military Flyer to the latest in Air Force technology, the U.S. Air Force Museum offers an appropriate stage for issuing the First Flight stamp," said Major General (Ret.) Charles Metcalf, Director of the U.S. Air Force Museum. "The museum is proud to join with the U.S. Postal Service, the 'Inventing Flight' organization and the city of Dayton for this historic event."

Inventing Flight: Dayton 2003 was founded in 1989 to promote aviation, the Wright Brothers and especially Dayton, Ohio's role in the birth and future of aviation. Inventing Flight has partnered with some of the greatest names, faces and locations in aviation and aerospace to bring a truly special series of personalities, events and programs to Dayton in 2003. Inventing Flight: The Centennial Celebration will consist of three weeks of action-packed adventure, leading audiences through a world of discovery based on the powerful example provided by the achievement of manned, powered flight.

"Given that Kitty Hawk Postmaster Bill Tate served such an important role in convincing the Wright brothers to come to the Outer Banks a century ago, this year's First Flight stamp is a fitting tribute to the U.S. Postal Service's role in the first flight and a perfect addition to the First Flight Centennial," said Lawrence A. Belli, Superintendent, Outer Banks Group, National Park Service.

Intellectually curious and mechanically inclined, Wilbur Wright (1867-1912) and his brother Orville (1871-1948) owned a printing business and several bicycle shops in Dayton. In the late 1890s their interest turned to aviation, and from 1900 to 1902 they tested a series of gliders at Kill Devil Hills, a location near Kitty Hawk, N.C., that was chosen primarily for its steady winds. The Brothers continued their work at Huffman Prairie Flying Field near Dayton, improving the process of controlling flight while designing aircraft capable of mid-air turning.

In 1903 the Wright brothers built a new flyer, which they also tested at Kill Devil Hills. Equipped with a four-cylinder engine that delivered a little more than 12 horsepower, the flyer-with Orville at the controls-lifted into the air at about 10:35 a.m. on Dec. 17. Although the craft was only airborne for an estimated 12 seconds and traveled only 120 feet, the Wright brothers had achieved the first controlled, powered, sustained flight in a heavier-than-air flying machine. Three even more successful flights followed later that day, the remarkable prelude to a century that would see the world forever changed by air travel.

Eighty-five million self-adhesive First Flight stamps will be printed and made available in a souvenir sheet of 10 stamps of one design. The stamp illustration by McRay Magleby of Provo, Utah, depicts Orville Wright at the controls of the 1903 Wright flyer. Text at the bottom of the design reads: "First Flight ? Wright Brothers ? 1903." The front of the souvenir sheet features a detail of a photograph of Orville and Wilbur Wright taken in Pau, France, in 1909.

 

 

Last Updated

02/10/2014

 

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