The Wright Brothers & The Invention of the Aerial Age
“Aviation has gone beyond my dreams."
— Orville Wright
The invention of the airplane by Wilbur and Orville Wright is one of the great stories in American history. The Wright brothers’ invention not only solved a long-studied technical problem, but helped create an entirely new world.
The Wright Brothers & The Invention of the Aerial Age explores who Wilbur and Orville Wright were, what they achieved and how they did it, and how the world first reacted to their revolutionary invention. At the center of the story and the heart of the gallery is the original 1903 Wright Flyer, one of the most iconic artifacts in the Smithsonian’s collection.
Innovators in Early Flight
February 25, 2022
The Airplane in Early 20th Century Culture
April 25, 2022
Power and Control in the Air
February 14, 2022
Who Were the Wright Brothers?
June 20, 2022
Before the Wrights Were Aviators
June 22, 2022
The Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk
June 23, 2022
The Military Gets Its Wings
September 09, 2022
The Roar of the Crowd
September 09, 2022
Search the Collection
The Museum gratefully acknowledges those who have generously supported this gallery.
David M. Rubenstein
Frederick and Barbara Clark Telling
Tom and Eileen Culligan
Julia and Frank Daniels Jr.
The James Dicke Family
James M. and Anita K. Guyette
C. Jeffrey and Katherine J. Knittel
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