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Blanchard’s Observations and Piece of his Balloon (139413, 9r)

Blanchard’s Observations and Piece of his Balloon (139413, 9r)

This page juxtaposes a narrative account of the balloonist Blanchard’s Third Aerial Voyage on July 18, 1784 with a clipping that illustrates the design of the wings used in his flight and a scrap on which is glued a piece of the balloon, “procured” by an onlooker, J. Cuthbert (a name that reappears throughout the scrapbook), when “at Paris.” The clipping next to the scrap narrates the spectacular circumstances surrounding its procural: this is a scrap that was cut up by an enraged onlooker with a sword after he was turned down by Blanchard in his request to ascend in the balloon. The clipping tells us that the balloon was soon mended and Blanchard went on to great success. The juxtaposition on this page of narrative, illustration, and collected material from balloons is characteristic of this particular scrapbook and brings together the different avenues of communication surrounding balloon flight.