Wright Brothers

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.

Jerry Kenney

A newly discovered photograph calling into question the Wright Brothers claim to the “first in flight” title continues to draw reaction from aviation experts. Some historians say German Immigrant Gustave Whitehead deserves the distinction.  The photograph in question is actually a photograph within a photograph. Amateur historian John Brown found it in an attic in Germany.

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.

Presidential Aviating

Jan 21, 2013

Presidents and flight had a quiet start in the summer of 1909, when Orville returned to Ft. Myer to complete the Army trials that ended abruptly with his crash in September of the previous year.  The Army allowed the Wrights to return as they had already more than fulfilled the contract.  This time there were many observers, including fellow Ohioan President Williams Howard Taft.  A tent was set up, and he sat with the Wrights' sister Katharine.

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.

Full episode of WYSO Weekend for November 25, 2012 including the following stories:

- Jerry Kenney speaks with Angie Hoschouer, program director for Goodwill Easter Seals' Radio Reading Services about the broadcasts they provide for the Miami Valley

-Dan Patterson tells the story of the Creation of the Wright Company.

- Conrad's Corner: an Interview with Eric Blanchard

The National Air & Space Museum

Last year, Governor Kasich proclaimed October fifth Wright Brothers Day in Ohio. On that day, in 1905, Wilbur Wright flew the Wright Flyer for nearly 40 minutes at Huffman Prairie. It was proof that flight was practical.

In the summer of 1908, Wilbur Wright astonished the world, demonstrating the Wright Flyer in France.  No one had ever flown as long and with such control.  The world took notice.

Back here in the states, that same summer, Orville Wright was making demonstration flights, too, for the US Army's Signal Corps, trying to get a contract to sell planes to the US government.  Dayton aviation historian and photographer Dan Patterson tells the story.

courtesy Dan Patterson

This year is the 100th anniversary of the death of Wilbur Wright, whose life and accomplishments are so much a part of the story of Dayton.  Local aviation photographer Dan Patterson has traveled all over the world, making pictures of the places where aviation history was made, especially the places where the Wright brothers made their mark.  On this day in 1908, not quite five years after the first powered flight at Kitty Hawk, Wilbur Wright made the very first public demonstration flight in history in France.

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