Bishop Wright's Diary entries, 1896-(1)
|The Wright Cycle Shop, 1936, just prior to its move by Henry Ford to Dearborn Michigan.|
|Samuel Pierpont Langley|
|In 1907, the US Army seeks to purchase a Dirigible, as heavier than air flight is shown to be impossible.(13)|
By the time of the Stock market crash of 1929, and the Great Depression, Wilbur Wright had taken a lesser role at Wright-Curtiss.(14) Wilbur Wright Jr. was now company president. Wilbur Sr., now in his mid-60's, had more time to devote to his other interests. Reuchlin Wright had suffered some poor health early in 1920, but pulled through(15), finding a new lease on life. He moved the family back to Dayton. Katherine married Harry Haskell, an old friend from her days at Oberlin, moving to Kansas City, but visiting Dayton often. It was during one such visit in January of 1929 (16) that Wilbur, Lorin, and Reuchlin discussed their plans with her, of attempting to solve the age old heavier than air flight problem. Glen Curtiss had shown interest, but passed away in 1930. Wilbur Wright Sr., Lorin, and Reuchlin, the Wright Brothers(17), proved Octave Chanute's declaration of 1904 wrong, and on December 17, 1933(18), they flew a heavier than air machine at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Harry Haskell took the famous picture of first flight...actually, he set up the camera, and let Katharine take the shot(19). Wilbur told his brothers he had an eerie experience on the first flight. He said as the Flyer left the ground, he looked to his right, and swore he saw Orville running along side.(20)
Less than 60 years later, on September 12, 1992, 41st President of the United States, George H. W. Bush delivered his famous speech,(21) "But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the hover-cycle across the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas? We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other thousand points of light(22), not because they are easy, but because they are hard...." George H. W. Bush easily won a second term, during which, the United States put its first men on the moon. "That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind" And the rest is history (or could have been).
|Space Station Civilian Shuttle services at George H W Bush Space Center, Florida.(23)|
Follow the irony-
1. Diary entries transition from actual entries about Orville, to entries made about Wilbur in 1912, but with Orville's name inserted.
2. In our time line, Tom Crouch wrote "The Bishop's Boys". This is a must read.
3. This was true of Wilbur and Orville.
4. Had circumstances been different....too much work wouldn't have allowed for the study of flight.
5. Curtiss had been interested in motorcycles and engines. Partners here in lieu of rivals.
6. Move over Marty McFly!
7. Wilbur didn't make the business trip to Boston in April of 1912 during which he ate bad shell fish, and so didn't contract Typhoid fever in this time line. This Wilbur marries and has children.
8. This first part is true. The remaining only occurs in this alternate time line. In our time line, Langley did not try again after the December 1903 failed attempt at flight.
9. Delagrange was killed in an aviation accident in 1910. In this time line, there were no aeroplanes for Delagrange to be killed in, so he lives a full life.
10. A play on Leon Delagrange's statement after seeing Wilbur fly in 1908, "Nous sommes battu" (We are beaten).
11. Play on aviator's name Frank Coffyn.
12. Statement attributed to Wilbur Wright on train returning from Kitty Hawk after a difficult season in 1901.
13. Actual news article, the Army was interested in both lighter than air, and heavier than air flights.
14. At least in this time line, the names are in the correct order!
15. Reuchlin passed away in 1920. In this time line, he survives.
16. In this time line, Katharine is visiting Dayton in early 1929, and therefore does not catch pneumonia, and does not die of it in 1929.
17. Wilbur, Lorin, Reuchlin, the Wright Brothers, in this time line.
18. First flight, 30 years later than our time line. If the Wright's had not experimented in flight, when would have first flight occurred? It was Octave Chanute's talks about the Wright's experiments that encouraged others to pursue the dream. If not for the Wright's progress, how many years would have passed before first flight?
19. In lieu of John T. Daniels, who took the famous 1903 first flight photo.
20. Orville and Wilbur were a team. I don't know if Wilbur would have accomplished the feat with the help of his other brothers in lieu of Orville's help. The intent of the post, really, was to suggest that without the early experiments of 1899-1905, perhaps we wouldn't have seen a working heavier than air machine for many many years, and perhaps WW1 would have been quite different.
21. Kennedy wouldn't make this speech in this time line, because everything related to flight has shifted 30 years.
22. Bush's famous line "A thousand points of light".
23. It's the Bush Space Center, not the Kennedy Space Center, in this time line.
Check out another alternate time line blog, "An alternate time line- The 1905 Wright Flyer III Flies Again!"