November is Aviation History Month. In November 1782, Joseph Michel Montgolfier and Jacques Etienne Montgolfier experimented with filling paper and fabric bags with smoke and hot air, leading to the invention of the hot air balloon, man's first flight, and the entire science of aviation. The brothers' experiments demonstrated that it was possible to soar above the earth and survive. To mark this remarkable anniversary, the Government Printing Office is featuring the following publications on American aviation history.
Publisher: Interior Dept., National Park Service, Harpers Ferry Center, Division of Publications
Description: Describes the Wright brothers of Dayton, Ohio and the events that led to the world's first successful flight of a man-carrying, power-driven, heavier-than-air machine on Dec. 17, 1903 at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
Year/Pages: 2002: 116 p.; ill.
Publisher: Defense Dept., Defense Intelligence Agency, National Defense Intelligence College, Center for Strategic Intelligence Research
Description: Although photography was already a well-established fixture of 19th century society, it was the marriage of photography and the airplane that created the new military art of aerial observation during World War I. Shooting the Front is a pioneering study of the impact of aerial photography on America's fledgling air force during its baptism of fire above the trenches of the Western Front. This comprehensive history from the Defense Intelligence Agency highlights aerial photography's ability to command the high ground and provide a concise view of a battle area, both tactically and strategically. It is an authoritative account of aerial reconnaissance and the interpretation of photographs as they evolved into the most important sources of intelligence along the entire Western Front during the Great War.
This comprehensive resource will interest military history and aviation enthusiasts, as well as students of the history of intelligence. The numerous illustrations, many never before published, include images of aircraft, cameras, and people, authentic official aerial photos, and maps in varying scales, all designed to help the reader relive the exhilarating and dangerous experience of aerial observation in World War I.
Year/Pages: 2006: 523 p.; ill.
Publisher: Defense Dept., Air Force, Air University
Description: Examines the development of military night aviation from its origins through the First World War. Places emphasis on the evolution of night flying in those countries that fought on the Western Front: France, Germany, Great Britain, and the United States.
Year/Pages: 1998: 172 p.; ill.
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