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Name: Amos Ives Root

  • Birth: 9 DEC 1839 in Medina Township (Medina) State of Ohio
  • Death: 30 APR 1923 in Medina (Medina) State of Ohio
  • Burial: UNKNOWN Spring Grove Cemetery in Medina, Ohio

Bees on the Roof

Leave it to a beekeeper to make aviation history. An Ohio entrepreneur/beekeeper named Amos Root was, according to reports, the only person to actually witness the Wright brothers’ airplane flights in 1904 and 1905. And not just witness them, but write about them in a publication he founded called “Gleanings in Bee Culture.”

Root makes an appearance in David McCullough’s “The Wright Brothers” and also in an article on PBS’s Nova site. As the Nova site says, “almost as astonishing as the fact that a pair of bicycle shop owners invented the airplane” is that the first “accurate reporting on their earliest flights appeared” not in The New York Times or Scientific American, but in “an obscure journal for beekeepers.”

Root, a beekeeping hobbyist from his early twenties on, started a company in Medina, Ohio, that made beehives and beekeeping equipment. One of his best inventions was developing removable…

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