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By C J Norman

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The steering lines became entangled so that the ship was first obliged to stop, then by reversing the engines to proceed backwards. This was, however, a favourable evidence of her handiness under untoward circumstances. After she had been in the air nearly an hour and had covered four or five miles, a landing (p. 069) was ordered and she dropped to the surface of the lake with perfect ease. Before reaching her shed, however, she collided with a pile—an accident in no way attributable to her design—and seriously bent her frame.

At the same time the wind was carrying me toward the Eiffel Tower. It had already carried me so far that I was expecting to land on the Seine embankment beyond the Trocadero. My basket and the whole of the keel had already passed the Trocadero hotels, and had my balloon been a spherical one it would have cleared the building. But now at the last critical moment, the end of the long balloon that was still full of gas came slapping (p. 050) down on the roof just before clearing it. It exploded with a great noise; struck after being blown up.

They had seen my fall and immediately hastened to the spot. Then, having rescued me, they proceeded to rescue the airship. The operation was painful. The remains of the balloon envelope and the suspension wires hung lamentably; and it was impossible to disengage them except in strips and fragments! The later balloon "No. " with which Santos-Dumont won the Deutsch prize may fairly be taken as his conception of the finished type of dirigible for one man. In fact his aspirations never soared as high as those of Count Zeppelin, and the largest airship he ever planned—called "the Omnibus"—carried only four men.

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