The tone and scope of the press coverage demonstrated in these clippings, clearly show the Wright Brothers were the first major celebrities of the 20th Century. The clipping show a wide range of facets of Orville and Wilbur Wright's place in aviation, during the first decade of powered flight. The articles chronicle the world's awe, skepticism, fear, and hope generated by humankind's first significant forays into the skies. Twelve years of feats, constant record breaking, challenges, accolades, affronts, utopian predictions and predications of doom are documented in these clippings.
Publications include The New York Times, New York Herald, New York American, Dayton Daily, Dayton Journal, Dayton Press, Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald, Chicago Examiner, Chicago Evening News, New York Press, Washington Times, Scientific American, San Francisco Chronicle, The Illustrated Scientific News, Virginian Pilot, Cleveland News, Cincinnati Inquirer, Aeronautical News, Le Monde Illustre, The Globe of London, Paris Herald, and many more
Among many events, coverage includes: Wilbur and Orville's first free, controlled, and sustained flights in a power-driven, heavier-than-air machine. The Wright Brothers at Huffman Prairie, a large meadow near Dayton, build a new heavier and stronger machine with a more powerful motor. Wilbur Wright makes the first turn in the air on September 15, 1904 and the first complete circle on September 20. The U.S. Board of Ordnance and Fortification's rejection of the Wright Brothers' offer of sale of their airplane. The U.S. Patent Office granting the Wrights patent, No. 821,393, for a flying machine in 1906. The Wright Brothers travel to Europe to negotiate the sale of the Wright airplane abroad. Wright Brothers carry a passenger on a flight for the first time, when Charles Furnas flies with Wilbur. Wilbur Wright makes his first flight at Le Mans on August 8, 1908, the Wrights' first flight in Europe. On September 17, 1908, Orville is seriously injured and his passenger, Lieutenant Thomas Selfridge, is killed in an airplane crash at Fort Meyer, when the airplane crashes to the ground from a height of about seventy-five feet after a propeller blade breaks and the machine goes out of control. Selfridge becomes the first airplane fatality. Wilbur Wright's winning of the 1908 Michelin Cup and a prize of twenty-thousand francs with his flight of 123 kilometers, two hundred meters in two hours, 18 minutes, 33 3/5 seconds. He extends this same flight to break a new world record in a time of two hours, 20 minutes, 23 1/5 seconds over 124 kilometers, 700 meters. Celebration thrown by the city of Dayton honoring the Wright Brothers. Glenn H. Curtiss sells his Curtiss airplane, the first commercial sale of an airplane in the United States, to Aeronautic Society of New York for $7,500. Sale sets in motion the beginning of the Wrights' patent suit against Curtiss. On July 29th, 1909 with lieutenant Frank Lahm as his passenger, Orville flies for one hour, 12 minutes, 37 4/5 seconds. Flight fulfills the Army's requirements and is witnessed by President Taft, his cabinet, and other public officials as well as an estimated crowd of ten thousand spectators at Fort Meyer. Wright Brothers begin a patent suit against Herring-Curtiss Company and Glenn H. Curtiss by filing a bill of complaint to prevent them from manufacturing, selling, or using in exhibition the Curtiss airplane. On October 4, 1909 as part of the Hudson-Fulton Celebration, Wilbur Wright flies round-trip demonstration flights from Governors Island, New York, to the Statue of Liberty and Grant's Tomb, New York City. More than one million spectators present. Wright Company, formed to manufacture their airplanes, is incorporated; Wilbur serves as president and Orville as vice president. A few days later, Wrights sell their American patent rights to the company for $100,000, 40 percent of the company stock and a 10 percent royalty for every airplane built. On May 30, 1912, Wilbur Wright dies of typhoid fever in Dayton, Ohio. U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals of New York rules in favor of the Wright Company in its suit against Herring-Curtiss Company and Glenn H. Curtiss.
Articles also contain coverage of the Wright Brother's sister, Katherine Wright, and many long forgotten events.