Published Writings of Wilbur and Orville Wright (Smithsonian History of Aviation Series)

Overview

For the first time, nearly seventy of Wilbur and Orville Wright's published writings are brought together in a single, annotated reference. Spanning the decades from the brothers' turn-of-the-century experiments with gliders until Orville's death in 1948, the articles describe the design of their aircraft, early test flights, and camp life at Kitty Hawk. Because Wilbur's sudden death in 1912 ended any hope that the Wrights would produce a book of their own, the articles collected in this volume are their only ...
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Overview

For the first time, nearly seventy of Wilbur and Orville Wright's published writings are brought together in a single, annotated reference. Spanning the decades from the brothers' turn-of-the-century experiments with gliders until Orville's death in 1948, the articles describe the design of their aircraft, early test flights, and camp life at Kitty Hawk. Because Wilbur's sudden death in 1912 ended any hope that the Wrights would produce a book of their own, the articles collected in this volume are their only published words.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Nearly 70 technical and popular articles, speeches, interviews, letters, and other writing by the brothers span from their experiments with gliders at the beginning of the 20th-century to Orville’s death in 1948. . . . Jakab, a curator of early aviation at the National Air and Space Museum, and Young, with the Wright Experience organization . . . annotate the material thoroughly.”—Book News
Booknews
Nearly 70 technical and popular articles, speeches, interviews, letters, and other writing by the brothers span from their experiments with gliders at the beginning of the 20th century to Orville's death in 1948. They describe the design of their aircraft, early test flights, camp life at Kitty Hawk, airplane stability, the future of commercial aviation and air travel, sport flying, air safety, military aviation, and other topics. Wilbur's sudden death in 1912 prevented them from writing a joint book, so this collection is the fullest to date of their combined work. Jakab, a curator of early aviation at the National Air and Space Museum, and Young, with the Wright Experience organization creating reproductions of the Wrights' aircraft, annotate the material thoroughly. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781588341426
  • Publisher: Smithsonian Institution Press
  • Publication date: 5/19/2004
  • Series: History of Aviation Series
  • Pages: 316
  • Sales rank: 1,424,848
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.95 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter L. Jakab is curator of early aviation at the National Air and Space Museum and the author of Visions of a Flying Machine: The Wright Brothers and the Process of Invention (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1990). He lives in Virginia.

Rick Young is co-founder of the Wright Experience, an organization that researches, designs, constructs, and tests reproductions of the Wright brothers' aircraft. He also lives in Virginia.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi
Introduction 1
1 "The Age of the Flying Machine Had Come" The Wrights Tell Their Story 11
1. Statement by the Wright Brothers to the Associated Press 14
2. Statement to the Aero Club of America 16
3. Our Recent Experiments in North Carolina 19
4. Our Aeroplane Tests at Kitty Hawk 21
5. The Wright Brothers' Aeroplane 24
6. Ohio in Aviation 35
7. Presentation of Langley Medal to Messrs. Wilbur and Orville Wright 36
8. The Earliest Wright Flights--A Letter from Wilbur Wright 37
9. A Letter from Orville and Wilbur Wright 39
10. How We Made the First Flight 40
11. My Narrowest Escape in the Air 49
12. How I Learned to Fly 51
13. The Work of Orville Wright 57
14. Wright's First Statement since the War 58
15. Orville Wright: An Interview 59
16. Our Early Flying Machine Developments 63
17. The Wright-Langley Controversy: Both Sides Presented by Orville Wright and Dr. Walcott 66
18. Winged Pioneers: A Thumbnail History of Aviation by the Men Who Have Made It 72
19. Why the 1903 Wright Airplane Is Sent to a British Museum 73
20. Orville Wright Declines--Naturally: With the Smithsonian These Days Life Is Just One Statement--and Label--after Another 76
21. Wilbur Wright 79
22. What's Going On Here? An Answer by Our Traveling Reporter, Fred C. Kelly 81
23. Our Life in Camp at Kitty Hawk 84
24. Orville Wright Ordered Return to America of Original Airplane 92
25. Orville Wright--"First Man to Fly" 98
2 "Some Aeronautical Experiments" Technical Articles by the Wrights 107
26. Angle of Incidence 109
27. The Horizontal Position during Gliding Flight 112
28. Some Aeronautical Experiments 114
29. Experiments and Observations in Soaring Flight 132
30. The Relations of Weight, Speed, and Power of Flyers 147
31. Inverted Aeroplane Stresses 148
32. Stability of Aeroplanes 149
33. Possibilities of Soaring Flight 157
3 "The Greatest of the Precursors" The Wrights Assess Their Contemporaries 163
34. He Can Half Fly 165
35. Air Ship Soon to Fly 166
36. Wright's Statement Concerning Johnstone's Fatal Fall 167
37. The Life and Work of Octave Chanute 168
38. What Mouillard Did 171
39. What Clement Ader Did 176
40. Otto Lilienthal 184
41. The Mythical Whitehead Flight 188
4 "It is Never Safe to Prophesy" The Wrights on the Future of Aviation 191
42. Flying as a Sport--Its Possibilities 194
43. The Aeroplane: What It Will Be Like in Five Years Time, Opinions of Prominent Aeroists 196
44. The Future of the Aeroplane 200
45. Flying from London to Manchester 201
46. Airship Safe: Air Motoring No More Dangerous Than Land Motoring 205
47. A Talk with Wilbur Wright 206
48. W. Wright on Altitude and Fancy Flying 208
49. In Honor of the Army and Aviation 210
50. Wright Considers High Speed Too Dangerous 211
51. Wilbur Wright Favors Reliability Tests 213
52. Wright Finds Ocean Crossing Risky Now 213
53. Flying Machines and the War 214
54. Address by Orville Wright at the National Parks Conference, under the Auspices of the Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C., January 5, the Day's Program Being Devoted to the Subject of "Motor Travel to the Parks," and under the Direction of the American Automobile Association 219
55. The Safe and Useful Aeroplane 221
56. Orville Wright Says 10,000 Aeroplanes Would End the War within Ten Weeks 231
57. Says Aircraft Will Win War 238
58. Wright to Make Aeros for Commercial Use 238
59. The Future of Civil Flying 239
60. Sporting Future of the Airplane: Reduced Landing Speeds an Essential Factor 242
61. The Commercial Airplane 244
62. Low-Speed Landing Is First Need of Aviation 246
63. Inventor of the Airplane Details Some of Early Experiences in Radio Message to World 247
64. Orville Wright Forecasts Aircraft Expansion 252
65. What Is Ahead in Aviation: America's Foremost Leaders in Many Branches of Flying Give Remarkable Forecasts of the Future 256
66. Sun Power Motor 257
67. Orville Wright Foresees Great Progress in Next Decade 258
68. Orville Wright Takes Look Back on 40 Years since First Flight; Despite Air War, Has No Regrets 261
69. Wright Favors Free Competition on Postwar Foreign Air Routes 267
Appendix "Then We Quit Laughing" Witnesses to the Birth of Flight 271
70. Then We Quit Laughing 274
71. With the Wrights at Kitty Hawk: Anniversary of First Flight Twenty-five Years Ago 278
72. I Was Host to Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk 283
73. My Story of the Wright Brothers 285
74. The First Airplane--After 1903 296
Bibliography 301
Photography Credits 307
Index 309
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