Trivia

Hard

The First Hot Air Balloon Passengers Were?

English Inventors
Livestock
French Aristocrats
German Soldiers

Answer: Livestock

It would be easy to assume that the first hot air balloon passengers were the inventors of the hot air balloon, but no. In September of 1783, when French paper manufacturers and inventor brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier sent their first “passenger capable” hot air balloon aloft, they were not in it (an earlier test flight occurred in June).

Neither were any of the dignitaries and aristocrats that had gathered to see the launch nor, for that matter, was there even a human being aboard the balloon. Why no humans? High altitude flight of any sort had not been tested in any way and there was concern that it could injure or kill the passengers.

Although the King of France offered some prisoners as less-than-willing test subjects for the first manned experimental flight, the brothers declined and instead attached a basket containing a sheep, duck, and rooster. The duck was included, rather practically, as the control group under the presumption that the high-flying duck would have no issue with the altitude. The test was a success, lasted eight minutes, and the balloon flew roughly 2 miles with a safe landing. The next two tests (one tethered and one not) were conducted with human volunteers and over the next few years rapid advances in hot air balloon design led to the hot air balloon becoming a viable (albeit slow) method of human flight.

Trivia

Hard

Which Iconic Movie Prop Took A Trip To The International Space Station?

Trivia

Hard

Boris Yeltsin Attributed His Abandonment Of Communism To?

Trivia

Hard

The Comet Lovejoy Is Notable For Leaving A Trail Of?

Trivia

Hard

The Medical Term For The Numbness You Experience When A Limb “Falls Asleep” Is?

Trivia

Hard

Which Of These Video Games Delivers The Story Line As A Stage Play?

Trivia

Hard

The Skin Of What Fruit Causes Poison-Ivy-Like Reactions In Many People?

Trivia

Hard

Which Iconic American Food Was Originally Packaged In Cologne Bottles?

Trivia

Easy

Naturally Occurring Rubber Is What Color?

Trivia

Easy

What Caused 7 Million Americans To Disappear In The 1980s?