To Ride the Fractious Horse: The American Aeronautical Community and the Problems of Heavier-than-Air Flight, 1875-1905

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Crouch surveys the attempts in the United States to develop a heavier-than-air craft in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He focuses on Samuel Pierpont Langley, third Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, and his failed attempts to develop a aircraft called an "Aerodrome" that never flew successfully.


  • Langley, S. P (Samuel Pierpont) 1834-1906
  • Wright, Orville 1871-1948
  • Wright, Wilbur 1867-1912


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Ph.D. dissertation

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Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,




  • Airplanes
  • Langley Aerodrome
  • History of Technology
  • Secretaries
  • Langley Aerodrome Tests
  • Aeronautics
  • Wright Flyer (Airplane)

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