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First Air Voyages in America

Ballooning and other Innovative Forms of Flight

From Ballooning to Breaking the Sound Barrier and Beyond

The first air voyage in America took place in 1793. It was a balloon flight, and it ushered the United States into the age of human aviation.

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This exhibition, “First Air Voyages in America: Ballooning and Other Innovative Forms of Flight,” is intended to commemorate the 225th anniversary of that historic event, and to highlight other noteworthy first air voyages since 1793 that were made possible by the human drive to explore, discover, and achieve.

These include ballooning advancements during the 19th century, as well as the first steps toward space by balloon in the 20th century, and major milestones in airplane flight, such as the first air voyage to break the sound barrier.

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Such achievements have a history upon which they are built, making the 1793 balloon flight that lifted off from Philadelphia all that more important to remember and to celebrate.

And likewise, future first air voyages will be built upon the lessons and success of past and current experiences, and, in particular, the contributions and dreams of those who take us higher, farther, and faster than ever before.  

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