Jimmy Carter photo

Proclamation 4802—Wright Brothers Day, 1980

November 12, 1980

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Seventy-seven years ago on December 17, at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, the Wright Brothers launched man into the age of powered flight. Though their historic first flight lasted but 12 seconds, inventors Orville and Wilbur Wright accomplished what mankind had dreamed of for centuries.

The development of the airplane is one of the most remarkable achievements of the Twentieth Century. Because of it, barriers of time and distance have lost much of their social and political significance to the world family of nations.

In the three generations since that historic flight in 1903, aviation has grown to become one of America's greatest enterprises; one of its largest employers; a fundamental ingredient in the national economy; a mighty deterrent against aggression and a prime defender of peace. Our air transportation system is the greatest in the world and the primary public carrier in the United States. Moreover, some eighty-five percent of the aircraft in use throughout the world are of United States manufacture, and the free world's seven largest airlines are United States flag carriers.

To commemorate the historic achievement of the Wright Brothers, the Congress, by joint resolution of December 17, 1963 (77 Stat. 402; 36 U.S.C. 169), designated the seventeenth day of December of each year as Wright Brothers Day and requested the President to issue annually a proclamation inviting the people of the United States to observe that day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

Now, Therefore, I, Jimmy Carter, President of the United States of America, do hereby call upon the people of this Nation, and their local and national government officials, to observe Wright Brothers Day on December 17, 1980, both to perpetuate the memory of the Wright Brothers' signal achievement and to stimulate American pride in the furtherance of this Nation's aeronautical progress.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twelfth day of November in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fifth.

Signature of Jimmy Carter


Jimmy Carter, Proclamation 4802—Wright Brothers Day, 1980 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/250860

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