'Ascent and Descent of Mr Hampton's Balloon and Parachute', 3 October 1838.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Lithograph by G Rowe after his original drawing. John Hampton (b 1799) worked in the Navy before turning profesional aeronaut and making his first ascent in June 1838. On 3 October that year he became the first Englishman to make a succesful parachute jump at Montpellier Gardens in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. His parachute was based on Garnerin's 'umbrella' design. It consisted of a canvas envelope, stretched over a framework of whale-bone ribs and bamboo stretchers, attached by a copper tube to a small wicker car. Hampton jumped from a height of 6000 feet in a descent lasting 12 minutes 40 seconds. He went on to make a further seven parachute descents before his retirement in 1852. Published by H Davies, Cheltenham.