On a windy day 115 years ago at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, Orville and Wilbur Wright achieved the first successful airplane flights. With courage and perseverance, these self-taught engineers relied on teamwork and application of the scientific process. What they achieved changed our world forever. Never forget to dream big. Photo of Wright Brothers National Memorial by Bill Kohutanycz (www.sharetheexperience.org).
In the mid-1800s, artists and painters of the Hudson River School flocked to Mount Desert Island in Maine to capture its natural beauty with their brushstrokes – inspiring patrons and friends to explore the area. As more people came to savor the fresh salt air, beautiful scenery and relaxed pace, the fame and popularity of this gorgeous coastline grew. After years of preservation efforts, this lovely landscape became Acadia National Park in 1929. Photo by Ritesh Tandon (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Labor Day recognizes the contributions of the American worker. On Chicago’s south side, Pullman National Monument helps tell the story of one of the first and most famous company towns in America. The Pullman Company – a major manufacturer and operator of railroad cars – had periods of cooperation and conflict with their workers. An 1894 strike gained sympathy for the plight of workers and directly led to the designation of Labor Day as a federal holiday. Photo of the Historic Pullman Foundation’s mural, “Visual Interpretations of Pullman,” by National Park Service.
One of architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s most famous buildings, Fallingwater has been called “the best all-time work of American architecture.” Harmonizing with the surrounding forest, rock and water, this famous home rises over a stream known as Bear Run near Mill Run, Pennsylvania. Numerous buildings designed by Wright are designated as National Historic Landmarks, joining over 2,500 exceptional places that help tell the story of art and history in America. Photo by National Park Service.
On the evening of April 3, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke about how proud he was to be alive during the Civil Rights movement. Even though his dream of freedom and justice for all had not yet been achieved, Dr. King knew that someday, “we will get to the promised land.” The next evening, 50 years ago today, Dr. King was on his way to another speech when he was struck down by an assassin’s bullet. Though his life was over, his legacy lives on. You can learn more about Dr. King at Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park in Georgia, Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail in Alabama and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C. Photo of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., by the National Park Service.