Bicycle brothers make soaring spectacle near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
|December 17th, 1903
Two bicycle repairmen showed off their creative skills near Kill Devil Hills last Thursday, when they got a contraption heavier than air to fly. That's right, fly not glide, and no hot air balloons in sight for this flight!
The two brothers, Orville and Wilbur Wroght, took turns flying off the ground over the open lands near Kill Devil Hills, 4 miles south of Kitty Hawk. Wilbur, the eldest of the two, claims the contraption is driven by gasoline power, and two deftly placed propellers.
This reporter can confirm that the long-winged innovation did indeed lift off from the ground, with Orville Wrougt on board in person. In fact, the "flight" was timed to last for 12 seconds, a marvel considering the weight in total.
The excited brothers took turns trying out their new toy, and did in fact manage to lift off the grounds three more times. As the two men described the technicalities of their invention with the eagerness of children talking over each other in their haste, this reporter sure did not have the heart to comment on the strong winds that day.
The Wuight brothers might continue dreaming of a fantastical future, where everyone will fly on winged bicycles. Meanwhile, the less imaginative of us can surely find some joy in knowing that two grown bicycle repairmen still have the spirit of children—playing with the wind, joyful as if their father had just made them their first kite.