2¢ - Carmine, dull carmine
Printing Method: Flat Plate
Subject: Wright Brothers plane over DC
Number issued: 49,498,900
Scott #: 649
Issued: December 12th, 1928
25¢ - 40¢
No postmark with gum (MH)
40¢ - 60¢
Full perfect gum, no postmark
no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH)
50¢ - $1.50
#649 was issued with the following plate #'s
9954-57, 62-65, 78-81
A first day issue of #649, dated December 12th, 1928
A pane of 50 of #649, there were four panes to a sheet of 200
President Coolidge called for an International Civil Aeronautics conference to be held in Washington DC on the 25th anniversary of the Wright Brothers Flight. The stamp depicts the Wright Flyer (shown above) flying over Washington DC. The plane never did fly over DC, DC was added as it was the location of the conference.
The first sustained flight by a manned heavier-than-air powered and controlled aircraft was on December 17th, 1903.
The Wright Flyer Engine
A truly surprising engine. The block was 82% Aluminium to make the engine lighter. The brothers had heard that both Benz and Daimler had successfully employed aluminium blocks. It was cast and engineered without any drawings. The only metal working machines available to manufacture the engine were a lathe and drill press. It weighed 180lbs and produced an initial 16hp but as the engine heated up this dropped to 12hp.
There was no battery (a magneto was used),no carburetor, no spark plugs and the radiator was made out of speaking tubes. The engine can be seen at the Wright Brothers Museum in Kitty Hawk, NC.
A photo essay of #649
A large die proof on India, die sunk on card