Boston, Massachusetts – July 9, 1862
At about 7:00 p.m. on the evening of July 9, 1862, a balloon named the “Star Spangled Banner” piloted by Samuel A. King, ascended from the Boston Common with four passengers aboard. Once aloft it was unexpectedly blown seaward, and then fell at a rapid rate to the water. The gondola was dragged through the water of Boston Harbor as several boats gave chase in an attempt to rescue its occupants. One steam powered boat, the Huron, managed to catch up and rescue the aeronauts after securing a line to the balloon. Once the men were safely aboard, the line snapped, and the now empty balloon shot up into the sky and disappeared in the clouds.
The New York Herald, “Ascension Of The Great Balloon “Star Spangled Banner” From Boston Common – Peril Of The Aeronauts”, July 11, 1862