Latham's attempts to cros the English Channel, 19 July 1909.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Coloured lithograph by Ernest Montaut (1879-1909) showing Hubert Latham (1883- 1912) in the 'Antoinette'. Latham's first attempt to cros the Channel on 19 July 1909 failed 7 miles after taking off from Sangatte, near Calais, France, when the engine of the plane stopped. Latham tried again on 27 July 1909, two days after his rival Louis Bleriot had made the first succesful crosing. Latham was in sight of Dover when the Antoinette came down hard, and only prompt rescue saved him from drowning. Montaut and his wife, Marguerite (or Gamy), were the first artists to capture the Heroic Age of aviation and motor racing. They were receptive to innovations in transport and in technique.