First Flight

courtesy of wright-brothers.org

Republican congressman Mike Turner is advocating for national parks funding to purchase the Wright Brother’s original manufacturing facilities in Ohio, as debate intensifies over rights to the first-in-flight title.

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner will be in Dayton today alongside Amanda Wright Lane of the Wright Family Foundation to discuss efforts to purchase the Wright Company Factory buildings and include them in Dayton's aviation history park.

The buildings are the first U.S. facilities specifically designed and built to manufacture airplanes.

Connecticut's legislature has jumped into an argument over who was the first aviator to fly.

Legislation waiting for a decision by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says Gustave Whitehead, a German immigrant who lived in Bridgeport, flew the first plane in 1901. That would be two years before the Wright brothers took off from Kitty Hawk, N.C.

Republican State Rep. Larry Miller of Stratford spearheaded the legislation. He says not crediting Whitehead has been a mistake that's now being corrected.

Dan Patterson

A newly discovered photograph calling into question the Wright Brothers claim to the “first in flight” title has created controversy this week between aviation experts. Some historians say German Immigrant Gustave Whitehead deserves the distinction. Dayton aviation photographer and historian Dan Patterson is WYSO’s aviation commentator. He discussed the issue in an interview with Emily McCord.

A newly discovered photograph has sparked controversy over whether or not the Wright Brothers were really the first in flight. Some historians are saying that German Immigrant named Gustave Whitehead deserves that distinction but as Emily McCord reports for WYSO, despite the new discovery, the debate has been going on for years.

courtesy of Wright State University Archives and Special Collections

Today is perhaps the most important date in aviation history.  It was 10:35 in the morning on December 17, 1903, when Orville Wright flew a powered aircraft  on the sands near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.  It was a short  flight - with huge consequences. Dayton aviation historian and photographer Dan Patterson knows the story well.

The anniversary of powered flight is going to be commemorated in the Wright brothers' hometown.

The Dayton Daily News reports that the 109th anniversary of flight will be recognized in a wreath-laying ceremony Monday morning on Wright Memorial Hill in Dayton.

Air Force Lt. Col. Eric Piel, a C-5 and C-17 cargo jet pilot, will speak at the event. Amanda Lane Wright, a great grandniece of the Wright brothers, and Col. Cassie Barlow, Wright-Patterson 88th Air Base Wing commander, will participate in the wreath laying.