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Fairfield Celebrates 'First In Flight' Hometown Hero, Gustave Whitehead

Fairfield First Selectman Mike Tetreau, right, views a replica of Gustave Whitehead's flying machine.
Fairfield First Selectman Mike Tetreau, right, views a replica of Gustave Whitehead's flying machine. Photo Credit: Town of Fairfield

FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- First Selectman Mike Tetreau has proclaimed Sunday, Aug. 14, as “Gustave Whitehead Day” in the Town of Fairfield.

This day will celebrate the 115th anniversary of Whitehead’s 1901 historic “First in Flight” in Fairfield which took place prior to the 1903 flight of the Wright Brothers in Kitty Hawk, N.C.

Tetreau said, “It is important our Town continues to honor Gustave Whitehead and his unforgettable legacy. Whitehead’s historic flight is exciting and very meaningful to our community and puts Fairfield in the spotlight with the most important milestone in aviation history.”

In keeping Whitehead’s legacy alive, Fairfield resident Andy Kosch will display a full-size replica of Gustave Whitehead’s Condor 21 airplane on Sherman Green for the public to view on Aug. 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Kosch, a member of the Town’s Gustave Whitehead First in Flight Advisory Committee and a member of Stratford’s Connecticut Air and Space Center’s board of directors, led a team to build and fly a replica of Gustave Whitehead’s airplane in 1986 proving the airworthiness of the design and refuting many Whitehead critics.

The Fairfield Museum and History Center will host a free, Fairfield “Fly In” program to celebrate the anniversary of Whitehead’s flight from 10 a.m. to 2 pm on Saturday, Aug. 13. For more information on this event, click here.

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