Jean-Pierre-Franois Blanchard was born on July 4, 1753, in Les Andelys, France. He went on his first balloon flight, in Paris, in March of 1784. They were the first to cross the English Channel by air. In 1793 Blanchard made the first U.S. balloon flight, from Philadelphia. He expired on March 7, 1809, in The Hague, Netherlands.