In 1903, at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Orville and Wilbur Wright flew their homemade airplane for 59 seconds, travelling in the air a distance of 260 meters. Their aircraft is generally recognized as the first heavier-than-air, powered vehicle, meaning that anything that flew before then was either a glider, a balloon, a blimp, or a bird.1
Although rocket technology is a whole different field, it’s nonetheless interesting to note that it was only 66 years later – less than a human lifetime – that the first human beings walked on the surface of the moon. Somebody could have witnessed, as a child, the first airplane to ever take to the sky, and then grown up and gotten on a commercial airliner to Florida to watch Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin take off in a Saturn V rocket.
- Other possibilities include a bee, a bat, and a pterodactyl. ↩