Snuff box, with painted lid showing Pilatre de Rozier and Jules Romain's balloon ascent

Made:
1785-1800 in France
maker:
Unknown
artist:
Unattributed

Snuff box, circular, with painted lid showing Pilatre de Rozier and Jules Romain's 15th June 1785 balloon ascent, unsigned, French, 1785-1800

One snuff box, French, ivory. Circular, 3' diameter. Painted lid: Balloon Ascent. On 15th June, 1785, Pilatre de Rozier and Jules Romain attempted to cross the English Channel in a balloon of de Rozier's design, featuring a hydrogen-filled chamber above a compartment filled with hot air. Unfortunately, about 30 minutes after they took off from Boulogne, the hydrogen in the upper compartment caught fire, almost certainly ignited by a spark of static electricity. The horrified watching crowd saw the balloon and its occupants plummet to earth resulting in de Rozier and Romain becoming ballooning's first fatalities.

Details

Category:
Penn-Gaskell Collection
Object Number:
1946-126
Materials:
ivory, paint
Measurements:
overall (diameter only): 75 mm,
type:
snuff box
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • snuff container
  • furnishing and equipment
  • vehicle - transportation
  • aircraft
  • lighter than air aircraft
credit:
Penn-Gaskell Collection

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