Connecticut to honor aviator it says beat the Wright Brothers to flight

BRIDGEPORT - Connecticut officials will gather in Bridgeport to honor an aviator they proclaim beat the Wright brothers by two years in being the first in flight.

A ceremony is scheduled Monday to recognize Gustave Whitehead and the 116th anniversary of what state officials have called the "first manned, controlled flight of a powered, heavier-than-air aircraft."

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A replica of Whitehead's aircraft will be displayed, and political leaders will read proclamations.

Connecticut officials say the German-born Whitehead, who lived in Bridgeport and Fairfield, took off in Fairfield on Aug. 14, 1901, and flew about a half mile at a height of about 50 feet. The Wright brothers' flight was in 1903 in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

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