Lighter than Air

Expérience du ballon dirigeable de M. Santos-Dumont
I. Sortie du ballon

II. Le ballon et son moteur
K: Unknown. P: Lumière Co. Fr 1900
September 19, 1900
Location: France, Saint-Cloud, Aéro-Club
Added sound
L’œuvre cinématographique des frères Lumière, No. 1121/1122

“Alberto Santos-Dumont (20 July 1873 – 23 July 1932) was a Brazilian aviation pioneer, one of the very few people to have contributed significantly to the development of both lighter-than-air and heavier-than-air aircraft. The heir of a wealthy family of coffee producers, Santos-Dumont dedicated himself to aeronautical study and experimentation in Paris, where he spent most of his adult life. In his early career he designed, built, and flew hot air balloons and early dirigibles, culminating in his winning the Deutsch de la Meurthe prize on 19 October 1901 for a flight that rounded the Eiffel Tower. He then turned to heavier-than-air machines, and on 23 October 1906 his 14-bis made the first powered heavier-than-air flight in Europe to be certified by the Aéro Club de France and the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. His conviction that aviation would usher in an era of worldwide peace and prosperity led him to freely publish his designs and forego patenting his various innovations. Santos-Dumont is a national hero in Brazil, where it is popularly held that he preceded the Wright brothers in demonstrating a practical airplane.”
Wikipedia

>>> Wright Brothers’ First Flight

Maiden Flight Of German Airship
P: British Pathé. UK 1908

“Airship is pulled to middle of field. The passenger basket / gondola beneath the ship fills up and the airship takes off. Among those in the gondola may be airship pioneer Dr Hugo Eckener. Dirigible in flight and coming into land when the crew and passengers disembark and are greeted by waiting crowds. Members of the crew chat to waiting dignitaries before they go to waiting cars.”
British Pathé

“The DELAG (Deutsche Luftschiffahrts A.G.) was founded as the airline side of the Luftschiffbau Zeppelin GmbH (German for ‘building of airships’) founded by Ferdinand von Zeppelin. Zeppelin was first introduced to lighter-than-air flight when he witnessed the deployment of observation balloons in the American Civil War as a military observer. He began to experiment with dirigibles from 1885 and constructed the LZ-1 which made its maiden flight on 2nd of July 1900. Both the LZ-1 and the following LZ-2 rigid airships were damaged beyond repair in their first few flights. Zeppelin invested heavily in building airships from his own pocket and his friend King Wilhelm of Württemburg organized a public lottery to provide funds for the project. The subsequent LZ-3 became a great success that captured the German public’s interest. It was first flown on 9 October 1906, in a flight lasting 2 hours 17 minutes and carrying eleven people. The German government, although impressed by the aircraft, wanted Zeppelin to complete a 24-hour flight to prove the capabilities of the airship before ordering it for military purposes. Midway through the 24-hour proving flight, the purpose-built LZ-4 was ripped apart in a storm and exploded. Sympathetic members of the public responded. Funding poured in from public donations amounting to 6 million marks in what came to be known as the ‘Miracle of Echterdingen’. This enabled the company to continue and build the LZ-5 for the Imperial German Army. The airship in the video is probably the LZ-3.”
Timothy Jabez Newman: Deutsche Luftschiffahrts A.G.: First airline with fare-paying passengers
First in Aviation

>>> Balloon Accident at St Cloud (Paris)

>>> EARLY DOCUMENTARY FILMS I