In the late 19th century there were many aspiring aviators who brought aviation closer to fruition. These were inventive people who would have been influential in whatever field of endeavour they chose. Some came close to being the first to achieve powered heavier-than-air flight. In the absence of powerful lightweight engines many struggled to get airborne. Some even claimed that they achieved flight before the Wright brothers.
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Pigs Might Fly
The Gliders and Hoppers
John J Montgomery