Wright Brothers Timeline
Timeline Description: For many years people wished that they could fly. While there were others who tried, the Wright brothers were the guy who made it happen. This timeline tells about their journey.

Date Event
1867 Wilbur Wright

Wilbur was born in Indiana.
1871 Orville Wright

Orville was born in Ohio, after the family had moved there two years before.
1878 The first inspiration

Wilbur and Orville's father brought them home a toy helicopter. The boys became fascinated with flying things.
1881 Let's go fly a kite

Orville began building kites as a hobby to feed his flying fascination.
1892 A bicycle shop

The brothers opened a bicycle shop. This let them get their hands dirty with building things, as well as gave them the funds they need for their later flight experiments.
1893 World's Columbian Exposition

The brothers attended the expo in Chicago. There was an aeronautical exhibit, and Wilbur and Orville were drawn to it.
1896 Their own brand

The brothers began manufacturing their own brand of bicycles in their bicycle shop. This gave them more hands-on experience in building.
October 1896 Otto Lilienthal dies

Otto was an aeronautical engineer, and his death while trying to fly a glider reminded the Wright brothers that they wanted to fly too.
1897 They reason between them

After Otto's death, the brothers began studying his methods as well as the methods of birds' flights. They decided they could create a machine for many to fly.
1899 The first experiments

The Wright brothers built a special kite to test the "wing-warping" method of flight.
1900 Kitty Hawk

Orville and Wilbur moved to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina so that they could better work on their flying experiments.
1901 The experiments continue

The Wrights had many big victories in 1901. They had their first articles published in aeronautical journals, they made several more flying experiments, and they gave speeches about their findings.
1902 A powered engine

The Wright brothers began working on putting an engine in their gliding machines.
1903 The first powered flights

Orville and Wilbur each made many short flights in their new invention. They applied for a patent.
1906 Patent granted

The Wrights' patent was granted, and the flying machine was called an aeroplane.
1908 Their first sale

The Wrights won a bid to build the U.S. military a flying machine. They also took their invention to Europe for the first time.
1909 Congressional Medal

The brothers are awarded the Congressional Medal for their contribution to the world of their flying machine. They started a flying revolution and proved that all things are possible.