'Monsieur Garnerin's Wonderful Descent by a Parachute', London, 1802.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Illustrated letterpress broadsheet published by John Fairburn in 1802. Frenchman Andre Jacques Garnerin (1769-1823) made the first parachute descent ever performed successfully by man from a vehicle, by jumping from a balloon at an altitude of about 3000 feet above Paris on 22nd October 1797. Thereafter he made exhibition jumps in many countries including this one from 8000 feet over London on 21st September 1802. The parachute was not only a safety device to escape from a damaged balloon, but was also used as a further thrill to intrepid adventurers.