|Fred Fassett's copy of "The Wright Brothers"(1)|
Fred Kelly's book "The Wright Brothers" is unique in the sense that Orville Wright reviewed it and approved it. When asked by John W. Wood in an interview with Orville on February 15, 1940, Wood wrote "Repeating what he had written me about the first write-up on "Wright Field '04-05' which I had sent him he said that McMahon's book "The Wright Brothers" was extremely inaccurate and misleading and he would therefor naturally prefer that I did not quote from that book." (See my post "Orville Wright's Criticism of McMahon's book 'The Wright Brothers: Fathers of Flight'") "With the corrections he indicated made he felt the write-up for Airports of the early Dayton field was unobjectionable. Regarding McMahon's book I said I did not know what book to read, about him and Wilbur. He (Orville) said there wasn't any. He said he had had a manuscript for two years, (written by someone else I understood) about him and Wilbur which he had been asked to correct but that it was a long job due to many errors and he just hadn't had time." The manuscript Orville was referring to was undoubtedly "The Wright Brothers" by Fred Kelly. Per Tom Crouch's "The Bishop Boys", pg 519, "The idea of writing a biography of the Wrights emerged slowly. By 1939, Kelly was determined to move ahead, aware that handling Orville would be a difficult and delicate task.....Kelly continued to write, sending Orville long sections of manuscript for comment. Almost without realizing it, Orville agreed to let Kelly produce a book with the understanding that he would have an opportunity to go over every word."
|Portion of July 7, 1943 letter by Fred Kelly to Fred Fassett (1)|
Text revisions- 1/15/2019
1. From Author's collection.
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