Exhibition takes flight at air and space museum

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WASHINGTON – The Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum will open “The Wright Brothers and The Invention of the Aerial Age” Oct. 11.

The exhibit will feature a sweeping array of artifacts, rarely seen photographs and engrossing interactives.

Centennial. The exhibition will celebrate the centennial of the first powered flight by examining the Wright brothers’ technical breakthrough and its cultural impact in the decade following the Dec. 17, 1903 milestone.

The centerpiece of the new gallery will be the original 1903 Wright Flyer, displayed at eye level for the first time since it was acquired by the Smithsonian in 1948.

Also included. Other artifacts in the exhibit will include:

* one of only five Wright-built bicycles still in existence;

* Wilbur Wright’s 1899 letters to the Smithsonian requesting publications on aviation;

* the stopwatch used to time the first powered flights;

* Orville Wright’s mandolin;

* wood and fabric from the 1903 Wright Flyer carried to the moon in 1969 by Apollo 11.

In addition, the gallery will feature full-size reproductions of a Wright experimental kite and two experimental gliders.

Telling the story. A selection of artwork and popular culture artifacts will help tell the story of how heavier-than-air flight was received and speculated upon as the new century took shape.

Admission is free.

For more information call 202-357-2700.

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