Celebrating the Wright Brothers, Dayton and the History of Aviation!

This week, we celebrate the anniversary of the The Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, which was was opened on October 16th, 1992.

I recently visited the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, and was fortunate enough to get a behind-the-scenes tour of the old Wright Company factory, where the Wright brothers produced approximately 120 airplanes in 13 different models. It's amazing the factory buildings still stand after more than 100 years, and they have gone through many transitions as other companies in the aviation and automotive industries have retrofitted and used them for their operations.

The Wright Company factory is closed to the public now...but work is underway to open it to visitors as a unit of the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.

Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park

Rendering of the new Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park

Wilbur Wright (1867-1912) and his brother Orville (1871-1948) built their first experimental airplanes in the back of their bicycle shop at 1127 W. Third St. They formed the Wright Company in November 1909. The company operated briefly in rented space until Building 1 was completed in 1910. Building 2 was erected in 1911.

The Wright Company factory was the first in America built for the purpose of manufacturing airplanes. Once restored and open to the public, the factory will complete the story of the Wright brothers’ invention, development and commercialization of the airplane in Dayton.