RICHARD CROSBIE [THE FIRST IRISHMAN TO MAKE A MANNED FLIGHT]
This statue is located in Ranelagh Park Gardens near the Ranelagh LuasTram Stop
Richard Crosbie (1755–1824) was the first Irishman to make a manned flight. He flew in a hydrogen air balloon from Ranelagh, on Dublin's southside to Clontarf, on Dublin's northside on 19 January 1785 and was 30 years old.
Crosbie, who was six feet three inches, was from Crosbie Park, near Baltinglass, County Wicklow. He studied at Trinity College, Dublin. His brother, Sir Edward Crosbie, was executed for treason.
Crosbie launched several balloons containing animals before attempting the first human flight on Irish soil. One of which, containing a cat, was seen passing over the west coast of Scotland, before descending near the Isle of Man. The cat and the balloon were both rescued by a passing ship. The balloonists of the eighteenth century, pioneers in the first successful method of conquest of the air, were men of science comparable to the astronauts of the 1960s, attracting the same public excitement and receiving similar international publicity.
His achievement occurred just 14 months after the first-ever manned balloon flight by the Montgolfier Brothers in France and is commemorated by a memorial located at the site of this historic event & commissioned by Dublin City Council.