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Charles Harris Papers

Identifier: MS-194

Scope and Content

The Charles Harris Papers consist of letters and postcards written by Bishop Milton Wright, the father of Orville and Wilbur Wright, to his nephew Charles Harris who lived in Iowa. An additional letter is addressed to Harris' daughter, Mabel Harris, and is also from Bishop Wright.

The eleven letters date from December 28, 1901 through June 10, 1916, and cover a variety of subjects including description of Wilbur and Orville's flying experiments and travels to Europe, discussion of family matters and the personalities of the Wright children and grandchildren, and a description of Wilbur's death and funeral in 1912. The letters are candid and open, giving interesting insights into Bishop Wright's feelings about his children. The letters have been encapsulated for their preservation as well as photocopied.


  • 1901-1916


Restrictions on Access

There are no restrictions on accessing materials in this collection.

Restrictions on Use

Copyright restrictions may apply. Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Biography of Charles Harris

Charles Harris was born in 1852 and was the son of Sarah Wright Harris and Charles Harris. His mother was the sister of Milton Wright and after her death Milton watched after her children from afar. Charles Harris lived in Lincoln Kansas where he married May Waite in 1881 and opened a hardware store. He later moved to Iowa where served as a post master. He remarried Lillian Angus and together they had four children: Mabel, Max, Charles Bryan, and Dale. The date of his death is unknown at this time.


0.25 linear feet

Language of Materials



Consists of 11 letters and postcards written by Bishop Milton Wright, father of the Wright Brothers, to his nephew Charles Harris who lived in Iowa. Letters date from 1901 thru 1916 and cover a variety of subjects including Orville and Wilbur's flying experiments, travels to Europe, family matters, and a description of Wilbur's death and funeral in 1912.

Statement of Arrangement

Arranged chronologically.

Other Finding Aid

A complete finding aid is available on the Special Collections & Archives, Wright State University Libraries web site at

Acquisition Information

The Charles Harris Papers were accessioned into the Wright State University Department of Archives and Special Collections in September 1989. They were donated by Charles Harris' son, Dale Harris.

Related Material

MS-1, Wright Brothers Collection

Guide to the Charles Harris Papers (MS-194)
Finding aid prepared by WSU Archives Staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Wright State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Repository

Special Collections and Archives
3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy
Dayton OH 45435-0001 USA