Octave Chanute to Wilbur Wright

Chicago, July 28, 1903

1 enclose herewith two photographs, and the translation of a letter from Captain Ferber,1 received this day.

You will find on the back of the larger photographs the data about weights, &c.

You can keep the translation of the letter, but I should like the photos back when you have done with them.

1 The subject was Ferber's notorious letter to Ernest Archdeacon (extracted in La Locomotion, Apr. 11, 1903, and L'Aerophile, Apr. 1903 see Appendix IV, B), containing an appeal to French aeronauts to close ranks in order to prevent the perfection of the aeroplane in America. Claiming the letter had not been intended for publication, Ferber defended it on the ground that no individual, or even the Wrights, Chanute, and Ferber in combination, could produce a successful flying machine, but that an appeal to national pride might result in the formation of a syndicate having both the necessary talent and the means. The consequence was the establishment of the Deutsch Archdeacon prize for the completion, in France, of the first flight of one kilometer closed circuit. The photographs were of Ferber's Aeroplane no. V1, his first so called power machine, which he was attempting to "fly" suspended from his aerodrome practice tower. As he had not been able to achieve a speed greater than one meter per second (2.2M.P.H.), Ferber conceded: "Mr. Wright therefore has still time to beat me."

Wilbur Wright to Octave Chanute, August 2, 1903