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Inquiry Question

Historical Context





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Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park:
Where the Wright Brothers Conquered the Air--
Supplementary Resources

By studying Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park: Where the Wright Brothers Conquered the Air students discover the early influences that inspired the Wright brothers as inventors and the importance of the Wright Cycle Company Complex where they developed the key mechanical skills that profoundly impacted their invention of the airplane. Those interested in learning more will find that the Internet offers a variety of interesting materials.

Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park
A cooperative effort between the National Park Service and four partners, this park includes four separate sites: The Wright Cycle Company Complex which includes the Wright-Dunbar Interpretive Center and Aviation Trail Visitor Center and Museum, as well as The Wright Cycle Company building; The Huffman Prairie Flying Field and Interpretive Center; The John W. Berry, Sr. Wright Brothers Aviation Center at Carillon Historical Park, which includes the 1905 Wright Flyer III; and The Paul Laurence Dunbar State Memorial. Visit the park's website for more information.

Wright Brothers National Memorial Historical Handbook
The National Park Service offers an online historical handbook on the Wright brothers and their experiences both in Dayton, Ohio and Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, including numerous images covering each stage of their development as inventors.

Wright Brothers National Memorial
The Wright Brothers National Memorial web pages include information on visiting the park as well as detailed descriptions and visuals of the Wright brothers' work. Also helpful are links to several websites on the Wright brothers and aviation history.

Wright Brothers National Memorial: Site of the First Controlled Powered Flight
Discover why the Wright Brothers chose the Outer Banks of North Carolina to conduct their flight experiments, how they achieved controlled powered flight in 1903, and how their accomplishments have been commemorated in this Teaching with Historic Places lesson plan.

Aviation: From Sand Dunes to Sonic Booms
This National Register of Historic Places' on-line travel itinerary provides information on more than 100 historic places listed in the National Register associated with history of aviation. Among the numerous sites featured on the itinerary are Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park and Wright Brothers National Memorial, as well as other historic sites associated with the Wright brothers. Also included are essays on the Idea of Flight, the Wright Brothers, Aviation Pioneers, Modern Aviation, Air Power, and Space.

Historic Places of America’s Diverse Culture
The National Register of Historic Places online itinerary Places Reflecting America’s Diverse Cultures highlights the historic places and stories of America’s diverse cultural heritage.  This itinerary seeks to share the contributions various peoples have made in creating American culture and history.

National Historic Landmarks
American Aviation Heritage Theme Study

To ensure that this important part of our nation's heritage is preserved and protected the National Park Service and the United States Air Force are partnering to prepare a Theme Study on the history of American aviation to identify the sites, districts, buildings, structures, and landscapes that best illustrate or commemorate key events in the history of American Aviation. Download the theme study American Aviation Heritage (.pdf) and view its list of associated NHLs to find online copies of National Historic Landmark nominations on properties already identified as relating to this important theme in American history.

The Wright Brothers: Pioneers in Aviation
Part of the on-line exhibit, Smithsonian Scrapbook: Letters, Diaries, and Photographs From the Smithsonian Archives, this web page includes letters written by the Wright brothers to the Smithsonian Institution.

Wright State University Libraries Special Collections and Archives
The Wright Brothers Collection at Wright State University is one of the most complete records of the Wright brothers' lives and work. The website includes digital images that provide extensive coverage of the Wrights' early gliders and flight testing in both North Carolina and Ohio.

NASA Glenn Research Center
Managed by the Office of Educational Programs at NASA Glenn Research Center, the website Re-Living the Wright Way includes an overview of the Wright brothers' invention process, extensive information and diagrams on the Wright's gliders and Flyers, biographies of Wilbur and Orville Wright, and links to NASA lesson plans and activities.

National Museum of the United States Air Force
The National Museum of the United States Air Force (NMUSAF) portrays the history and traditions of the United States Air Force through displays and exhibition of historical items. The museum's website includes the Early Years Gallery, where one can learn about early flight pioneers, including the Wright brothers, as well as Octave Chanute and Samuel Langley. The museum’s other galleries include detailed information on the use of airpower in World War I through present day.

The Federal Aviation Administration--Aviation Education Outreach
The Federal Aviation Administration's Aviation Education Outreach website offers several resources for teachers including a downloadable version of Orville Wright's own account of the first flight, "How We Made the First Flight".

National Air and Space Museum
The Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum maintains the largest collection of historic air and space craft in the world. The original 1903 Wright Flyer is among the hundreds of artifacts on display at the museum. The NASM web site features the interactive online exhibit, How Things Fly and an interactive online timeline of events, The Wright Brothers: The Invention of the Aerial Age.


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