Shortly after the first balloon flight in history took place in 1783, a Frenchman named Jean-Pierre Blanchard began a life-long obsession with balloon flight. He began to travel Europe demonstrating the new method of flight. As ballooning gained popularity, so did Blanchard. His fame was short lived, however, as his mishaps and his huge ego combined to push away the public that had been interested for a short while. In a bid to secure the funding of wealthy patrons unacquainted with his shortcomings, Blanchard travelled to England in 1784. There, Blanchard met John Jeffries, a wealthy American who had come...

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