The Civil War Connections Blog

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John La Mountain From Harper's Weekly

Look – in the sky! It’s a bird…no….it’s a plane (no, wait, those haven’t been invented yet…) it’s John LaMountain!

The resourceful yet prickly Mr. LaMountain began aerial reconnaissance from a balloon at Fortress Monroe on this day, 150 years ago. He had wanted to be the US Army’s Chief Aeronaut, but that honor went to Thaddeus Lowe. LaMountain went to work for Major General Benjamin Butler at Fortress Monroe instead.