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3 States Tussle Over Bragging Rights To 1st Flight

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(Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

(Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

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(AP) — Ohio license plates proclaim the state is the “Birthplace of Aviation,” and North Carolina plates say the state is “First in Flight.”

Connecticut says both are wrong.

It says German-born aviator and state resident Gustave Whitehead was the first to make a powered airplane fly.

Now the three states are in a tussle over bragging rights.

Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy signed a state law last summer insisting that Whitehead flew in 1901 — two years before Wilbur and Orville Wright, who were from Ohio, lifted off on North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

State lawmakers in both Ohio and North Carolina have called Thursday news conferences to dispute the Connecticut claim.

Jane’s All the World’s Aircraft, an industry publication, recently cited contemporary news accounts in concluding Whitehead was first.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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