Kill Devil Hills in Dare County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
Getting Off the Ground
Wright Brothers National Memorial
After four years of scientific research and rigorous experimentation, and with their 1903 Flyer on the rail, the Wrights are set to fly. In unison, they each pull down on a propeller. The engine roars to life and the propellers whip through the air; only a restraining wire keeps the flyer in place. Orville climbs onto the machine and positions himself into the hip-cradle. He releases the restraining wire and the machine slowly moves forward. Wilbur runs alongside to steady the machine. After traveling 40 feet down the rail, the flyer lifts into the air, launching the Age of Flight.
The Launch Rail & Dolly
The soft sand was not a good "runway.” The brothers built a 60-foot wooden rail with metal stripping to provide a hard and smooth surface for takeoff. A dolly of wood and bicycle hubs was placed on the rail to hold the flyer above the sand as it accelerated forward to liftoff.
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Air & Space Man-Made Features.
Location. 36° 1.182′ N, 75° 40.128′ 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. Kill Devil Hills (here, next to this marker); The First Flight (here, next to this marker); The First Successful Flight of an Airplane (a few steps from this marker); Commemoration (a few steps from this marker); First Flights: December 17th, 1903 (a few steps from this marker); The Camp (within shouting distance of this marker); Home Away From Home (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named The First Flight (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Kill Devil Hills.
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 250 times since then and 26 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on February 28, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.