Trivia

Hard

The First Hot Air Balloon Passengers Were?

English Inventors
Livestock
German Soldiers
French Aristocrats

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

The Piggy Bank Derives Its Name From?

Trivia

Hard

FAA Regulations Require All Commercial Aircraft Have What Anachronistic Item?

Trivia

Easy

What Quick Spreading Computer Virus Relied On Recipients’ Curiosity To Propagate?

Trivia

Hard

The Web Site For Which 1996 Movie Has Remained Online And Untouched?

Trivia

Hard

Which Iconic Sci-Fi Film Was Snubbed For An Academy Award Over CGI Effects?

Trivia

Hard

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Trivia

Hard

Which Of These Actors Almost Took The Role Of Neo In The Matrix?

Trivia

Hard

The Controls On The New Starship Enterprise Are Actually What?

Trivia

Very Hard

The Holes In Swiss Cheese Are Caused By?

Trivia

Hard

The Film Back To The Future Is Banned In China Because It Features?