In 2004, I thoroughly enjoyed a tour (free, by the way) of Dayton, Ohio’s Air Force Museum with a couple of other pastors. The museum’s picturesque history of flight was fascinating and was brought back to mind today.
Today marks the 105th anniversary of the Wright Brothers’ famous first flight (12/17/1903). Near Kitty Hawk, NC their “contraption” flew 859 feet in 59 seconds at a top speed of 31mph. The world has never been the same thanks to these two sons of a minister.
By 1905 the Wrights had “perfected” the technology such that the Wright Flyer 3 traveled 24 miles in 39 minutes. Confident they had a product to market, the Wrights kept their “toy” under the radar for fear of premature exploitation and imitation. They decided first to secure a patent and buyer before going public with their invention.
Having just invented the airplane, which would forever revolutionize how we view the world, what would they do with this technology? Who would be their first contact? The United States War Department! After the USWD declined their repeated overtures, the Wrights contacted France, German and Russia thinking some nation might have reason to use a flying machine, not for public beneficence, but for war! In 1909, the Wrights rolled out the first U.S. Military aircraft.
I cast no aspersions on the hearts of Wilbur and Orville Wright as I would’ve done the same thing. I only consider this another evidence of the depravity of man. We take what are unbelievable blessings of God and find a way to use them first for destruction and/or selfish gain. The first passenger on the Wright Flyer 1 was Adam.