Today in History - Exactly 216 years ago, The first parachute jump took place 3,200 feet above Paris at Parc Monceau. It was done by a French aeronaut named André-Jacques, a balloonist and the inventor of the frameless parachute, from a silk parachute attached to a hydrogen balloon.
Originally, the concept of a parachute was envisioned by Leonardo da Vinci In his articles. And in in1783, a Frenchman Louis-Sebastien Lenormand designed a sort of a parachute out of 2 umbrellas and leaped off from a tree. However, it was André-Jacques Garnerin who was the first to develop and test out parachutes capable and efficient at delaying a person's fall at a high altitude.
Garnerin carried out the first parachute descent on October 22, 1797. Garnerin rode in a basket connected to the bottom of the parachute. He then attached the parachute to a hydrogen balloon and ascended to an altitude of 3,200 feet, from this altitude high, he cut off the rope connected his parachute to the balloon. The balloon continued skyward while Garnerin, with his basket and parachute swung down violently as he failed to incorporate an air vent at the top of the prototype. He landed stunned and shaken but unscratched.
Adding to the record, his wife Jeanne-Genevieve, became the first female parachutist in 1799, from an altitude of 900 meters. Garnerin made a spectacular jumped from a hot air balloons as high as 8,000 feet in the air in 1802. unfortunately, his career and life was ended in a construction accident when he was knocked off by a beam while making a balloon and preparing to test a new parachute in Paris on 18 August 1823.