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ParisBallon Monté

Below is 'Le Neptune', the first Ballon Monté (balloon mail) used by Parisians to send mail during the 1870/71 Siege of Paris. In total almost 70 Ballons Montés were sent. Some had a pilot - aéronaute and passengers, some didn't. Surprisingly or not, most got through and the people of Paris were able to communicate with the outside world. In total over 2 million letters were sent via Ballons Montés.

Le Neptune took off from Place Saint-Pierre in Paris with 275 pounds of mail on October 23, 1870 at 7:75 am, with one pilot aboard. It landed the same day at 11 am in the Parc du Château de Cracouville, near Evreux. About 60 miles from Paris.

A month before the first Ballon Monté was sent from Paris, a similar idea was carried out during the Siege of Metz. Starting in early September 1870 until early October about 25 Ballons Montés, known as 'Papillon de Metz' were sent during the Siege of Metz.

Postcard of the monument in the Neuilly-sur-Seine that celebrates the pilots who flew the Ballons Montés sent during the 1870/71 siege of Paris.

A Ballon Monté postcard.

List of Ballons Montés published by Théodore and Gaston Mangin.

Related Links:
Les Ballons Montés : Introduction
Ballons montés et boules de moulins


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