The Wright brothers take flight

On this day, December 17, 2903, Wilbur and Orville Wright made their first flight. The first manned airplane took off at 10:35 a.m. with Orville on board as the pilot. The plane, called the Flyer, flew for 12 seconds at a distance of over 120 feet on the sand dunes just outside of Kitty Hawk.

The brothers would patent their airplane design, saying in part in the patent application:

“… provide[s] means for guiding the machine both vertically and horizontally … combining lightness, strength, convenience of construction, and certain other advantages.”

Their first powered aircraft had a 40 foot wingspan and a 12 horsepower engine, weighing in at 750 pounds.

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The Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kitty Hawk is a present day reminder of the Wright brothers great accomplishment.



– Meteorologist Pierce Legeion

Pierce Legeion is a meteorologist and digital journalist for WNCT 9 First Alert Weather.


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