History of Balloon Flight
Since the dawn of man, he has dreamed of little else than escaping the bounds of earth in flight.
That dream was realized through a series of experiments conducted by two brothers named Joseph and Etienne Montgolfier from Annonay, France. The first event was the unmanned flight of their woven (with linen and silk fibers) paper balloon on June 4 1783, fueled by the smoke of a fire made from wet straw, cow and sheep manure and old shoe leather. This success was followed by the flight of the first live creatures, on September 19, 1783 when a goat, a chicken and a duck ascended in a crude cage tied to the bottom of the paper balloon. Finally on the 21st of November, 1783, Count Francois Pilatre DeRozier and the Marquis D'Arlandes, Francois Laurent, flew the first manned balloon flight.
The fascination with the oldest form of flight remains as strong in the general populace today, as it was over 200 years ago.
Today, propane burners have replaced the smelly fires and the synthetic fabrics have replaced the paper for the envelopes, making balloon flights a truly wonderful and unforgettable experience.