New Laurels and No Broken Bones - Wednesday, November 5, 1902
The History: Octave Chanute responds to Wilbur's letter of November 3rd. "I am very glad indeed to know that you are safe at home, with new laurels and no broken bones."
Orville and Wilbur have just returned from testing their 1902 glider in the Kitty Hawk area. Chanute tells Wilbur, he would like to know more details of their experiments.
Chanute enclosed two letters from Samuel Langley, secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, a letter from Lawrence Hargrave and photographs Chanute took of the Wrights' glides while he was at their Kill Devil Hills campsite. Chanute tells Wilbur to let him know which photographs and the number of copies the Wrights would like.
Chanute has been travelling since he visited the campsite, ".... so that I have not worked on your computations", he communicates to Wilbur.
What does Chanute mean by the term "new laurels"? Laurel is a type of foliage. The Greeks used laurel to crown and honor the champions of the ancient Olympic games. Chanute has used the term "new laurels" to congratulate Wilbur and Orville on their new gliding records. They are the champions of flight!
Lawrence Hargrave was an Australian experimenter who tested rubber bands, compressed air and steam for power.
Unable to meet with Chanute as he returned from Kitty Hawk, Langley apologized to Chanute in one of his letters.