World Aloft is...
The scope of WORLD ALOFT is to complement and expand upon the many websites that have showered so much attention upon the formative years of the Wright brothers entry into flight up to December 1903 by taking the story through and beyond another 8 years while Kitty Hawk continued to be a principal testing ground for the brothers; but also to enlarge upon those mainstay websites (such as Library of Congress, National Air and Space Museum, National Park Service, Wright State University and others) that can only touch upon the Wright story in broad brush. WORLD ALOFT is an integral expression of researchers in the Harriot College of Arts and Sciences and of digital librarians in Joyner Library at East Carolina University. WORLD ALOFT thus contains or provides access to a rich body of data, photographs, and other materials on the experiments and experiences of the Wright brothers in North Carolina from 1900 through the creation of the Wright Brothers National Memorial at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

But WORLD ALOFT also concentrates upon materials and resources relating to the sudden and dramatic emergence of the Wrights in 1908 at Kitty Hawk from their private, even secretive experiments, to unavoidable public flights. Although the brothers went to Kitty Hawk in April 1908 hoping to test new dimensions in flight outside of public scrutiny, the world’s press discovered their activities and reported every move they made that year to the ends of the earth. From Kitty Hawk they were catapulted into the unwanted role of world-wide celebrities leading to subsequent public displays of their abilities before enormous crowds at Washington, DC, at multiple sites in France, in Italy, and finally in Germany.

WORLD ALOFT also provides materials and guidance toward further commemorations of the Wright brothers’ historic flights as they took their triumphs at Kitty Hawk worldwide to world audiences at the Fort Myer US army base outside Washington, DC; to flying fields at LeMans and Pau in France; to Centocelle Field at Rome, Italy; to Templehof and Bornstedt Fields near Berlin, Germany; and to Wilbur's heroic flight up the Hudson River at New York City.

WORLD ALOFT is a project of East Carolina University. ECU is the principal research university in the eastern one third of North Carolina and has sponsored major research efforts in all realms of coastal North Carolina history and natural and its natural environment. The university, through the diverse disciplines of its Thomas Harriot College, has been and continues to be the leading sponsor of activities to commemorate the achievements of the Wright brothers during the period from 1900 to 1911 while North Carolina served as the principal testing laboratory for the inventive brothers from Dayton, Ohio. As a participatory website for all persons interested in the Wright brothers and early flight, WORLD ALOFT is a forum for news, commentary, research, and perspectives. Contributions and ideas should be communicated to
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