In the beginning…

… there were no zeppelins, no airships. In the beginning there were no steam engines, no intenal combustion engines and no railways.

But: There were bold, enterprising individuals who went ahead and set the stage for other things to come. Two of these were John Jeffries of Boston and Jean-Pierre Blanchard of Paris. On this day in 1785 they crossed the English Channel in a hot air balloon:

Crossing the English Channel bay ballon (contemporary depiction)