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Sat, Feb 18, 2017

National Aviation Hall Of Fame Will Not Sell Signed Wright Aircraft Propeller

Denies Allegations From Congressman Mike Turner Concerning Artifact Sales

The National Aviation Hall of Fame says it will not sell a propeller dating back to 1915 which was signed by Orville Wright.

The 8-foot spruce prop is the only known aircraft artifact known to have been signed by one of the Wright Brothers. It is currently being kept at the hall at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, OH, according to ABC News.

Congressman Mike Turner (R-OH) received information that the Hall of Fame was considering selling artifacts in an effort to shore up its finances, and called for an investigation into the issue.

According to Hall president and Vice Chairman Michael Quiello, any discussion of selling the artifact was tabled two years ago.

A former trustee donated the propeller to the hall in 2004. At the time, it was valued at $37,000. It was later found in the collection and in 2013 it was appraised at $275,000. Quiello said that conservation of the prop for display was not consistent with the hall's financial and business plans, and the trustees considered selling it, but only for display at another site such as the National Air and Space Museum or the Wright Airplane Factory in Dayton.

Quiello told The Dayton Daily News that the trustees came to realize that the prop was not just an artifact, but rather a "national treasure" that "belongs literally to the people of the United States and anybody interested in aviation."

An appraisal history of the prop points to its use on a Wright-built float plane. It was signed at Orville Wright's home in Oakwood, OH in 1944.

FMI: www.nationalaviation.org

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