Kill Devil Hills in Dare County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
First Flights: December 17th, 1903
Wright Brothers National Memorial
On this cold and windy morning, the Wrights achieved the world’s first controlled flights. Here, they realized not only their own dream—but also one of humanity’s oldest dreams—to fly!
The boulder and numbered markers on the field in front of you mark the takeoff and landing spots of those four flights.
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Air & Space.
Location. 36° 1.188′ N, 75° 40.114′ W. Marker is in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, in Dare County. Marker can be reached from Wright Memorial west of North Croatan Highway (U.S. 158), on the right when traveling west. Marker is located within the Wright Brothers National Memorial Park, overlooking the site of Orville & Wilber's first successful powered flight. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Kill Devil Hills NC 27948, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Commemoration (here, next to this marker); The Camp (a few steps from this marker); The First Successful Flight of an Airplane Getting Off the Ground (a few steps from this marker); Kill Devil Hills (within shouting distance of this marker); The First Flight (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named The First Flight (within shouting distance of this marker); Field for Flight (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Kill Devil Hills.
Also see . . .
1. The Wright Brothers - First Flight, 1903. On December 17, 1903, Orville Wright piloted the first powered airplane 20 feet above a wind-swept beach in North Carolina. The flight lasted 12 seconds and covered 120 feet. Three more flights were made that day with Orville's brother Wilbur piloting the record flight lasting 59 seconds over a distance of 852 feet. (Submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. The First Manned Flight. The Wright brothers built a movable track to help launch the Flyer. This downhill track would help the aircraft gain enough air speed to fly. After two attempts to fly this machine, one of which resulted in a minor crash, Orville (Submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
3. December 17, 1903. The flyer moved down the rail as Wilbur steadied the wings. Just as Orville left the ground, John Daniels from the lifesaving station snapped the shutter on a preset camera, capturing the historic image of the airborne aircraft with Wilbur running alongside. Again, the flyer was unruly, pitching up and down as Orville overcompensated with the controls. But he kept it aloft until it hit the sand about 120 feet from the rail. Into the 27-mph wind, the groundspeed had been 6.8 mph, for a total airspeed of 34 mph. The brothers took turns flying three more times that day, getting a feel for the controls and increasing their distance with each flight. Wilbur's second flight - the fourth and last of the day – was an impressive 852 feet in 59 seconds. (Submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Credits. This page was last revised on March 1, 2018. It was originally submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 158 times since then and 24 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.