New book spotlights Katharine Wright

In NAHA News, NAHA News Release /

For immediate release
Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016

Timothy R. Gaffney
Director of Communications
(937) 219-8277 (mobile)

DAYTON, OH—Move over, Wright brothers. Katharine Wright, the youngest of the Wright siblings, emerges from their long shadows as the subject of Maiden Flight, a new book by Harry Haskell of Guilford, CT. Haskell is to make several author appearances in the Dayton area next week.

Maiden Flight, released this month by the Chicago Review Press imprint Academy Chicago, is the fictionalized telling of Katharine Wright and Henry J. Haskell’s love affair. Written by Haskell’s grandson and namesake, the novel is based on personal letters, newspaper reports and other documents of the period—in particular, Katharine’s lively and extraordinarily revealing love letters to Harry.

The story of Katharine’s marriage is as fascinating as it is tragic. Wilbur, Orville and Katharine lived together in Dayton as unmarried adults with their widowed father, the Bishop Milton Wright. Katharine’s vibrant, outgoing personality made her an indispensable asset to her renowned yet socially shy brothers. After Wilbur died in 1912, the others lived on together in Hawthorn Hill, their Oakwood mansion. And after Milton’s death in 1917, Orville and Katharine stayed together.

But in 1926, at age 52, Katharine moved out of Hawthorn Hill to marry Kansas City Star editor Henry J. “Harry” Haskell. She had known Haskell since her days at Oberlin College. She agonized over her decision for months, torn between love and loyalty. Her departure left Orville bitter and alone. He shunned his sister, refusing to see her for three years until she was literally on her deathbed.

Haskell has three appearances scheduled in the Dayton area:

Monday, Oct. 24, 7 p.m.: Book signing and talk, Books & Co. at The Greene, 4453 Walnut St., Beavercreek.

Tuesday, Oct. 25, 1 p.m.: Book signing and talk, Wright Dunbar Interpretive Center, Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historic Park, 16 South Williams St., Dayton.

Tuesday, Oct. 25, 7 p.m.: Lecture on Katharine Wright and Maiden Flight, Endeavour Room, Wright State University Student Union, 3640 Colonel Glenn Highway, Fairborn.

Haskell also has visits scheduled in Columbus, Cincinnati and Oberlin on Nov. 1, 2 and 3.

Visit for more information.

About NAHA
The National Aviation Heritage Alliance (NAHA) is a nonprofit chartered by Congress in 2004 as the management entity for the National Aviation Heritage Area, a region of national historical importance encompassing Montgomery, Greene, Miami, Clark, Warren, Champaign, Shelby, and Auglaize counties. The Heritage Area is one of 49 National Heritage Areas in a program administrated by the National Park Service, and the only one dedicated to aviation heritage. Visit for more information.