In a book that recalls Bruce Feiler’s Walking the Bible, Noah Adams takes readers along as he travels the route of Wilbur Wright’s first trip—by train and boat—to North Carolina’s then-desolate Outer Banks. In Ohio, Adams explores Huffman Prairie, the Wrights’ flying field (and the country’s first airport) at the edge of Dayton. In France, he finds the dirt horse-racing track where the Wright Flyer, circling high above, smashed records and amazed the European aviation community. He visits the parade grounds of Fort Myer, Virginia, where Orville made test flights for the U. S. Army, and Governor’s Island in New York Harbor, Wilbur’s takeoff point for a daring twenty-mile round trip up the Hudson River as a million people watched below.

Through scores of letters, diaries, oral history accounts, and other primary source material, Adams explores the talent and intensity of the Wright family, including the deeply complex and sometimes tragic bond between Orville and his younger sister Katherine.

The Flyers brings an unprecedented spirit of immediacy to one of history’s most dramatic stories.

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