Wright family collection 1835-1940 (bulk 1835-1868)
Collection Scope and Content Note
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The Wright family collection consists primarily of correspondence related to the Morfit family and to Wilbur and Orville Wright's uncle, John Wright. Several of the items in the collection relate to Henry Mason Morfit, John Wright's attorney, and to his son Campbell, including a series of letters from mid-1853 chronicling Wright's attempt to secure a patent for improvements to reapers and mining machines. Also included is a document dated May 26, 1852, in which Wright formally gave Morfit power of attorney in the matter. Other Wright items include a letter from Danforth P. Wright to Henry Wright, dated October 24, 1842, asking for genealogical information to be added to a history of the family. In addition to the John Wright letters, the collection also holds several items written to Campbell Morfit, Henry's son, mentioning his academic work at the University of Maryland. Later material in the collection includes a 1919 letter detailing the provenance of the John Wright papers, written on stationary from the Aero Club of America, and a 1940 letter composed by Orville Wright's secretary, confirming the Wright brothers' appreciation for the work of Lilienthal and Chanute.