'Ascent of Mr Godard's Montgolfier Balloon from Cremorne Gardens', 1864.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Printed woodcut from 'The Illustrated London News' showing Godard's giant balloon, 'L'Aigle' ('The Eagle'), ascending from Cremorne Gardens in London, in 1864. Eugene Godard was the father of Jules and Louis Godard who built Nadar's 'Geant' balloon. This balloon was more than twice the size of the 'Geant', with a capacity of 500,000 cubic feet, and was distinctive due to a curious fringe-like parachute encircling its upper hemisphere. Godard also patented the special 18 foot straw-burning stove he used to keep the huge Montgolfier aloft. He made two ascents from the Cremorne Gardens in his balloon, ending at Greenwich and Walthamstow repsectively. Unfortunately, the balloon was damaged on the second flight by a collision with a tree.