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Ohio Measure Defending Wright Flight Clears Legislature

The 'First-Flight' photograph.
Wright State University Archives
The 'First-Flight' photograph.

Ohio lawmakers have passed a resolution that repudiates Connecticut's claim that another aviator beat the Wright brothers as first in flight.

The measure cleared its final hurdle on Wednesday when state senators unanimously approved it. The Ohio House passed it earlier this year.

Ohio is formally responding to a 2013 Connecticut law that honored aviator Gustave Whitehead as being two years ahead of Dayton residents Orville and Wilbur Wright's 1903 flight off Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

The Ohio resolution's sponsor has suggested that Connecticut is changing history without evidence and Ohio must respond. Backers argue that aviation historians have examined and dismissed accounts that Whitehead flew a powered, heavier-than-air machine of his own design on Aug. 14, 1901, "or on any other date."