Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park, Dayton

Categories: National Parks, Historic Sites, Nature & Parks, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.7/5 based on 150 reviews on the web
Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park is a United States National Historical Park in Dayton, Ohio, United States that commemorates three important historical figures—Wilbur Wright, Orville Wright, and poet Paul Laurence Dunbar—and their work in the Miami Valley.Park historyThe idea for the present-day Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park was first conceived by Jerry Sharkey. Much of the Dayton neighborhood where Orville and Wilbur Wright had lived and worked had already been destroyed by the 1970s. Neglect, riots during the 1960s, and a highway project through the city had leveled much of the neighborhood. Decades earlier, Henry Ford had also relocated one of the Wrights' bicycle shops from Dayton to its present location in Greenfield Village, Michigan, for display.Sharkey's quest to preserve the Wright brothers' legacy began when he purchased their last surviving bicycle shop in Dayton for just $10,000, which saved the building from demolition. He also founded the Aviation Trail Inc., a nonprofit group dedicated to the creation of a potential national park or historic district encompassing the Wright brothers' buildings. Sharkey enlisted the help of local political and media figures to lobby for the creation of the park. Notable figures who supported its creation included the descendants of the Wright brothers, aviation historian Tom Crouch, U.S. District Judge Walter H. Rice, then-U.S. Rep. Dave Hobson, Dayton Daily News publisher Brad Tillson, and Michael Gessel, an aide to former U.S. Rep. Tony P. Hall. The group lobbied federal officials and the National Park Service to incorporate the landmarks related to the Wright brothers, which are scattered throughout the city, into a new historic trail.
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  • This is not a big museum, but it has lots of facts about aviation esp. Dayton's and the Wright's roles in it. The little cycle shop next door is a little bonus worth walking through. Lots of Dayton hi...  read more »
  • A great educational experience that taught about aviation history but also a bit about Paul Clarence Dunbar, African-American poet and Dayton native. Very interesting and engaging with hands-on activi...  read more »
  • It is called an aviation museum, but a lot of the museum is devoted to a poet, and not an aviator. A large section of the museum is dedicated to a poet that lived around the same time as the Wright br...  read more »
  • Great experience at this place. Very nice grounds and museum. I learned a lot about the Wright Brothers here that I didn't know. The 30 minute movie is very good too and I recommend if you can watch that first and then when you walk through the museum you'll get more out of it. You can spend 2 or 2.5 hours here. It has nice grounds if you want to picnic. The bike shop is just a quick mock up but check it out too. Definitely stop here for historical significance if you can.
  • Very nice museum and historical area. Lot of great information and history, wonderfully well led ranger tour gives you a great sense of how the neighborhood was when the Wrights lived and worked here.
  • My son and I had a great time exploring here. The tour was very informative and the museum and Wright brother's bike shop has lots of exhibits.
  • Really nice museum with a great local tour guide to take you round the surrounding areas. It would be great to see the government invest in restoring this area to reflect the importance that the Wright brothers had on aviation history.
  • Great place for families, large and small. Kids, teens, and adults will all find some they like here. Ask about the Junior Ranger program!
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