By Jessica Wehrman |
Monday, March 30, 2009, 04:20 PM
Amanda Wright Lane spent two years arguing that the national park devoted to her great-grand uncles Wilbur and Orville needed two more sites to fully tell their story. On Monday, March 30, her arguments bore fruit: President Barack Obama signed into law a massive parks bill that included a provision adding Hawthorn Hill, which is the Wright Brothers’ home and the Wright factory buildings to the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.
Wright Lane and U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, the key proponent of the measure in Congress, sat in the audience in the White House’s East Room for the bill-signing ceremony.
Wright Lane beamed as Obama signed the bill, and as the audience applauded the bill’s passage, she turned to Turner and shook his hand. “I’m really happy for our community,” she said, adding that visitors to the park can now learn about her great-granduncles’ family life and learn about how they manufactured commercial airplanes in Dayton.
Not many people, Turner said, knew the latter. Wright Lane confers with Turner before the bill signing.
Hawthorn Hill, in Oakwood, was designed by Wilbur and Orville Wright and was the family’s home until 1948.
The Wright Company factory buildings are the first U.S. buildings designed and built for the manufacture of airplanes.
The park currently includes Huffman Prairie, the Wright Cycle Company, Carillon Park, the Wright Memorial and the Paul Laurence Dunbar House. Wright Lane and Turner.
The bill also allows community organizations including Dayton History, which operates Carillon Historical Park, Aviation Trail and other partners that operate the park’s sites to receive grants from the National Park Service to help operate the park. Turner, R-Centerville, said such partnerships may become necessary as government funds become tighter and tighter, because it’ll help national and local governments team up to fund similar preservations.
As for adding the sites? “It should’ve been done when the park was created,” Turner said.