The brothers Joseph and Étienne Montgolfier run their first experiment in aeronautics in June 1783, in their native town of Annonay.
They put a paper-lined canvas bag into a rope net and launched the montgolfier into the air. It was a success: the French Academy heard of the experiment and invited them to repeat it in the presence of King Luis XVI. But the brothers went even further: on September 19, 1783, a montgolfier carrying passengers soared from the castle court at Versailles, with the king and his wife Marie Antoinette watching.
The world's first air travellers were a sheep, a duck, and a rooster; within ten minutes, the balloon carried the frightened animals 4 km away from the royal residence.
The brothers’ ideas about the driving force moving aircraft did not change: this time, the montgolfier was filled with smoke produced by burning wool and wet straw – it took five pounds of wool and as much as 74 pounds of straw.
Humans would be launched into the air a couple of months later.
And successfully too.