Blue-sky thinking

It’s always nice to see new ideas being proposed. Here’s one from The Mechanics’ Magazine, Museum, Register, Journal, and Gazette, No 948, Saturday, October 9, 1841.

Ballooning and steaming in conjunction


Will some one of your learned correspondents have the goodness, through the medium of your instructive publication, to inform the writer, wherein consists the impossibility of the following suggestion being reduced to profitable practice? viz

To transport merchandize across the sea, or from one part of the Continent to another, by means of a balloon towed by a steam lighter, or a steam carriage.

The balloon will relieve the lighter of the weight of the load and be itself guided in the required direction by the steam vessel. A fair and moderate wind, or no wind at all, is the desideratum. The suspended load to be lowered from the balloon by the aeronaut at the place of delivery, and with as little loss of gas as possible; and to be the first passenger is claimed by the projector.

Sir, I remain, yours, &c
Jersey, September 13, 1841

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