Monday, December 17, 2007

In 12 seconds, they changed the world

(I can't do better than this, so I'll just use it.)

"Most great breakthroughs were made on days long forgotten," writes the News & Observer.

"But there is something about the image of Orville and Wilbur Wright on the windswept sands of Kitty Hawk, coaxing an awkward mechanical bird off the sand -- and, with the shortest of flights, allowing humans the hope that they would not be forever confined to the ground.

"It was 104 years ago today that the Wright brothers achieved the world's first powered flight of a heavier-than-air craft, and the anniversary will not be ignored. ...

"But it's not just the Wrights' achievement that keeps people coming to the Outer Banks every December, said Darrell Collins, the memorial's historian. After all, the automobile, the telephone and penicillin also shaped modern life.

"Collins said it is the story of two brothers, working together with few resources other than their own hope and determination, that draws people to the memorial.

" 'In less than a minute,' he said, 'they changed the world.' ..."

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