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KITTY HAWK AND BEYOND: The Wright Brothers and the Early Stages of Aviation <i> by Ronald R. Geibert and Patrick B. Nolan (Wayne State University Press: $29.95; 160 pp.).</i>

Though a biographical essay is one of the features of this book, its true joys are its more than 100 rarely seen photographs from the Wright Brothers’ personal collection, including the graduation photo showing Orville and high school classmate/future poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. Best of all are the photos of the Wrights’ early flying machines, featuring both engineless gliders and the motored flights that made them famous. There is something both audacious and fragile in these daring early airships that wakes a sense of wonder in us all.


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