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Going Places

V. Silberer. Die Luftfahrten des Ballons "Vindobona" in Budapest 1883, 1883

From railways to airplanes, the history of transportation – and the tremendous feats of engineering that occurred along the way – figures prominently in the Vail Collection.

The collection contains hundreds of books (many of them beautiful) on lighter-than-air travel. And the Theodore Newton Vail Collection of Aeronautical Prints, Broadsides, and Clippings provides another look at the international craze for ballooning that began with the Montgolfier Brothers’ first flight.

However it began, George Edward Dering’s interest in railroads became strictly practical once he’d patented a connecting system for railway tracks. His rail track joint system, which could withstand “repeated blows with sledgehammers,” was widely employed and was manufactured in a forge Dering installed at Lockleys, his family estate in Hertforshire.

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Lighter-Than-Air Travel