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Wright Brothers Essay

1768 words - 7 pages

Bishop Milton Wright and Susan Catharine Wright had four sons, Reuchlin, Lorin, Wilbur, and Orville, and one daughter Katharine. Little did Susan Wright know that she had given birth to one of the world's most famous inventive partnerships. Wilbur was born on April 16, 1867, near Millville, Indiana. Orville was born 4 years later on August 19, 1871.The Wright brothers had a great impact on American society by inventing aircraft. They were known for being "Wright Brothers" by crafting a cheap printing press for newspapers for business. Wright Brothers bought bicycles at their youthful days to start a repair shop to earn a bit of cash.As the boys grew older, their parents encouraged them to pursue intellectual interests. They had two libraries in their house; books on theology were kept in the bishop's study, while the downstairs library had a large and diverse collection. This kept them always reading and learning while they were not at school. Although their dad was a firm disciplinarian, both parents were loving and kept the family a close one. Every once and awhile, Milton would bring them various souvenirs and trinkets he found during his travels for the church. One such trinket, a toy helicopter-like top, sparked the boys' interest in flying and gliding in the air.Wilbur's skating accident and his mother's illness and subsequent death kept him from attending college. Orville was on the other hand, was an average student, known for his mischievous behavior. He quit school before his senior year to start a printing business with his brother.The first time Wilbur and Orville referred to themselves, as "The Wright Brothers" was when they started their own printing firm at the ages of 22 and 18. Using a damaged tombstone and old parts, they built a press and printed their own newspaper.In 1892, the brothers bought bicycles. They began repairing bicycles for friends, and then started their own repair business. They opened up a bicycle shop in 1893, and three years later, made their own bicycles called Van Cleves and St. Clairs. While caring for Orville, who was sick with typhoid in 1896, Wilbur read about two events; the death in a flying accident of Otto Lilienthal, the celebrated German experimenter with gliders, and the successful launching of powered models by Samuel Langley. This struck Wilbur with excitement.The Wright's serious work in aeronautics began in 1899 when Wilbur wrote to the Smithsonian Institution for information on aeronautical research. Within a few months after writing to the Smithsonian, Wilbur had read all that was written about flying. He then defined the elements of a flying machine: wings to provide lift, a power source for propulsion, and a system of control. Wilbur alone recognized the need to control a flying machine in its three axes of motion: pitch, roll, and yaw. They quickly developed their own theories, and for the next four years devoted themselves to the goal of human flight.In August of 1900, Wilbur built his...

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