Wright Factory Preserved


The state of Ohio has come up with $1 million to preserve what some consider to be the crucible of aviation manufacturing. The former Wright Aircraft factory in Dayton will be preserved and perhaps rekindle aerospace industry in Dayton. “It’s here that started it all,” Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger said. “No other state in the nation can claim to be the birthplace of aviation.” North Carolina disputes that claim since the Wrights’ first successful flight tests were carried out near Kitty Hawk but regardless of the interstate rivalry there seems to be agreement the factory should be saved.

The money will be used to buy three buildings in a run-down area of Dayton that housed Orville Wright’s factory (Wilbur died in 1912). Two of the buildings will get exterior facelifts while the third will be renovated to house an effort to build a replica of the Wright B Flyer, possibly by 2017. The Dayton Development Coalition hopes the project will be the catalyst for developing a neighboring property. “Aerospace started here and hopefully we will see manufacturing brought back to the west part of Dayton very soon,” said Coalition CEO Jeff Hoagland.