This pretty rare document is a presentation issued for the First World Hot Air Balloon Championship, which took place in Albuquerque ( New Mexico, United States ), in 1973.
We offer for sale this pretty rare document, the presentation of the Official Programme issued for the First World Hot Air Balloon Championship, which took place in Albuquerque ( New Mexico, United States ), in February 1973.
The cover, illustrated by J. Irvin, depicts several mythological and historical characters, objects and lighter - than - air machines scattered into the clouds :
- Zeus, the sky and thunder god in Greek mythology, who rules as king of the gods of Mount Olympus.
- A hot air balloon.
- Leonardo da Vinci ( April 14th / 15th, 1452 - May 2nd, 1519 ), an Italian polymath of the High Renaissance who is widely considered one of the most diversely talented individuals ever to have lived.
- Pegasus, a mythical winged divine horse, and one of the most recognized creatures in Greek mythology.
- A map of the world.
- A spyglass.
- A sextant.
- Astraeus ( or Astraios ) - god of the dusk and associated with the winds in Greek mythology - blowing across the world.
- The Flyer A flown by one of the Wright brothers, Wilbur.
- An airship, a type of aerostat or lighter - than - air aircraft that can navigate through the air under its own power.
- Hermes, son of Zeus and Maia, who functioned as the emissary and messenger of the gods in Greek mythology, is also considered the protector of human heralds, travellers, shepherds, thieves, merchants, and orators.
- Daedalus, a skillful architect and craftsman, seen as a symbol of wisdom, knowledge, and power. Flying with the wings that he has fabricated for him and his son, Icarus, to escape from Crete, he is watching the latter falling from the sky because the blazing sun melted and softened the wax that held the feathers together.
Whilst opening the programme, you can see on the inside front cover the following details :
HOT AIR BALLOON
Saturday, February 10th, 1973, 11 : 00 A.M.
Presiding : Richard J. Pino, Postmaster Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Presentation of International Colors* :
National Anthem :
Invocation : Chaplain Clair Shaffer, Captain, United States Air Force.
Welcome : Don Kersten, Honorary President Balloon Federation of America.
Introduction of Distinguished Guests :
Robert P. Matteucci, President Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.
Remarks : P. Ed Yost, Founding member Balloon Federation of America.
Henry L. Newman, Regional Director Federal Aviation Administration Southwestern Region.
Introduction of Assistant United States Postmaster General :
Address and Presentation of Albums :
William D. Dunlap, Assistant United States Postmaster General, Customer Development.
On the back inside cover, there is a light blue envelope illustrated - on the left hand side - with a white cloud and three hot air balloons, one of which is decorated with the colours of The Stars and Stripes. On the right hand side appear, below USA postage 15c, two stamps :
- ALBUQUERQUE FEB 10 1973 NM.
- FIRST DAY OF ISSUE.
At the bottom of the envelope, you can read the following information : INTERNATIONAL HOT AIR BALLOONING * AEROGRAMME * VIA AIRMAIL * PAR AVION
Finally, here is the text* below the envelope :
A RENAISSANCE OF HOT AIR BALLOONING
A hot air balloon built by Joseph and Etienne Montgolfier opened the " sea of the air " to mankind's voyages. The first manned flight in a hot air balloon was performed on November 21st, 1783, with François Pilâtre de Rozier and Marquis d'Arlandes. Ballooning became a fad and hydrogen was added as the buoyancy gas. Hydrogen filled balloons were used for military operations during the American Civil War and the First World War. However, these were predominately tethered and were used for artillery observation posts. The art of ballooning reached its zenith in the rigid airships such as the Graf Zeppelin and the Los Angeles.
The development of a tough, inexpensive plastic film resulted in its application for gas filled balloons brought back the new sporting use of hot air balloons. The butane fueled burner provided the inexpensive means of inflating and maintaining the buoyancy of the balloon.
The modern revival of ballooning as a sport is centered around the United States and is often credited to Ed Yost of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The modern hobby balloon is roughtly 60 - 70 feet high or roughly the size of a four story building. It is currently estimated that there are over 200 sport balloons in the United States.
The first World Hot Air Balloon Championships held in Albuquerque, February 10th - 17th, 1973, are under the sanction of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. Ten thousand dollars in prize money will be awarded to the winners. Up to four representatives from each of 15 nations are expected to participate. Parades, tours, and contests will make this event a gala fiesta for the World Championship.
( source : Wikipedia )
* Programme and colours in British English.
* Corrected version.