Mr. Graham’s Aeronaut

Mr. Edgar and Thomas Walsh were the archi­tects of Camp­bell House Muse­um. Looks like one of Mr. Edgar’s drafts­men has been design­ing more than just buildings.…..

Local Mat­tersAir Ship – Mr. Gra­ham, a Draughts­man in Mr. Edgar’s office, cor­ner of Fourth and Green streets, has invent­ed a ship for nav­i­gat­ing the air, called an “Aero­naut.” It is to con­sist of a slight wood­en frame­work, cov­ered with var­nished linen, con­tain­ing fifty thou­sand cubic feet of gas, and cal­cu­lat­ed to car­ry ten or twen­ty peo­ple accord­ing as car­bon­at­ed or sim­ple hydro­gen is used.  The only machin­ery con­nect­ed with it, are two wheels with vanes like the ordi­nary ven­ti­la­tors of win­dows.  These vanes when act­ed upon by the wind, exert a reac­tionary pow­er, which dimin­ish­es the resis­tance, while the wind acts upon the sides in the same man­ner as on those of a ship; and this is only pow­er used, except in a calm, when a sin­gle man can dri­ve by the wheel, at the rate of about five and a half miles per hour.  The cost of the whole con­trivance will be only about two hun­dred dol­lars; but as the inventor’s pecu­niary cir­cum­stances will not admit of his under­tak­ing the con­struct on him­self, he would feel very grate­ful to the pub­lic if they would aid him in bring­ing into action an inven­tion so impor­tant as regards phil­an­thropy and util­i­ty.  The extreme­ly cheap and easy means which it will sup­ply to the poor of every nation for going all over the world and bet­ter­ing their con­di­tion – the oppor­tu­ni­ty it affords for plac­ing all inland cities on par with sea­port towns as regards com­merce – the many facil­i­ties it offers for con­firm­ing the over­land route to the Pacif­ic, and pop­u­lat­ing the route thith­er of the intend­ed Rail­road, have sug­gest­ed to the inven­tor the hope that the pub­lic of St. Louis and its neigh­bor­hood will be like­ly to take strong inter­est in car­ry­ing the inven­tion into prac­ti­cal effect.  Any per­sons will­ing to take a patent out for it are quite free to do so in con­nec­tion with J. C. Edgar, Esq., and the inven­tor, who has him­self no per­son­al inter­est in its pecu­niary suc­cess, hav­ing trans­ferred his share already to the church for char­i­ta­ble pur­pos­es.  The sub­scrip­tion of any­­­­ per­son who wish to take part in this benev­o­lent enter­prise, will be thank­ful­ly received by Mr. Gra­ham, at the office of J. C. Edgar, Archi­tect.  The inven­tor pro­pos­es to have the Aero­naut fin­ished in ten days after the nec­es­sary sum has been sub­scribed – then to exhib­it it for [ascent?] at first as a mod­i­fi­ca­tion of the ordi­nary bal­loon, and com­mit the receipts, which are expect­ed to exceed con­sid­er­ably the orig­i­nal cost, to the sub­scribers to be devot­ed by them to any pub­lic or char­i­ta­ble pur­pose they may decide upon. [1]

[1] Dai­ly Mis­souri Repub­li­can, 19 March 1853, page 2