The Wright brothers’ first experience with flight occurred in 1878, when their father gave them a small rubber band–powered toy helicopter designed by French aviation pioneer Alphonse Pénaud. Intrigued by the little flying machine, they made several copies of it of varying sizes. After playing and experimenting with them, the brothers behaved like most young boys: they moved on to other diversions. Orville made this sketch of the toy in 1929.
Image Number: WEB13589-2013
Credit: National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution
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