||This print from the above book is on page 505 and titled "What a Wonderful Cloud Manufactory This Niagara Is."|
Mr. Wise, John LaMountain, O.A. Gager and William Hyde were in the balloon "Atlantic" which took off from St. Louis, Missouri, July 1, 1859. It flew across the Niagara River just before noon July 2, 1859 and thus these men were the first to fly across the Niagara, and the first to record in print their observations of the Great Falls. Two others had seen the Falls earlier (1847 and 1858) from the air each from a distance of about twenty miles.
Mr. Wise, on page 504, states they were 10,000 feet high and 'a bottle of Heidsieck" was uncorked to honour the occasion. From this height they also saw from Fort Erie and Buffalo to Fort Niagara and Youngstown. 'Indeed, there was so much of interest to be seen at one time that it was difficult to dwell upon any single sight without losing a great portion of the whole scene..." The balloon later landed on the shore at the eastern end of Lake Ontario and was the longest balloon flight, in the 19th century.