October 5th marked the anniversary of the first practical flight conducted at Huffman Prairie, OH in 1905 by (who else,) Orville and Wilbur Wright. As we noted in a recent piece, a road trip to Kitty Hawk, NC was an arduous journey in the early 20th century. So, in 1904 the Wrights made an arrangement with a farmer in Huffman Prairie, just east of Dayton, OH, allowing them to continue their flight experiments closer to home. The farmer graciously allowed use of his cow pasture where the latest version of the Wright Flyer could be flown in relative secrecy. He did not ask any compensation for the use of his pasture, but he did have one stipulation: Move the animals out of your way before take off.
After nearly two more years of hard work that involved crash after crash and multiple injuries to the brothers, on October 5, 1905 the big breakthrough finally came. That day Wilbur took off from the bucolic cow pasture and made an incredible flight. He spent 39 minutes in the air, circling the field some 30 times, covering a total of 24 and ½ miles! And all that on one gallon of gas! It was the first time the brothers demonstrated a plane that could take off, fly in circles, do figure-eights and land safely. The brothers themselves thought the plane to be their most significant one yet, even more so than the 1903, which they found difficult to control. This explains why the 1905 flyer, kept entirely in tact from that history-making date of October 5, 1905, is on display at Carillon Park in Dayton. Indeed, it is billed as the first practical airplane and is the only airplane ever designated as a “National Historic Landmark”. ‘Nuff said already!
This day marked the end of the Wright brothers’ experimental phase. They had a practical airplane ready for patent and sure to attract customers. The real beginning of aviation and all the promise of its future came together on that day. At a single glance our bi-wing brand icon visually captures a moment of the historic flight over Huffman Prairie and the timeless elegance of the Wright brother’s image. It’s our invitation to you to Invent yourself.