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Modes of Transportation › Articles

Old photos of different types of transportation - trains, planes, automobiles, and more - as well as the people who piloted them.

Of air, water, and land, only flying through the air had eluded humans for millennia. Wheels on carts as well as river boats are known to have been used since 3500 B.C. But since that time - especially starting in the 19th century - modes of transportation have proliferated: Ships of all kinds, submarines, buggies, wagons, automobiles, motorcycles, bicycles, and airplanes - from Piper Cubs to supersonic planes to rocket ships. Humans have come a long way since the first mode of transportation: legs.

Some interesting facts about types of transportation:

  • While the first hot air balloon flight was in 1783 France, the Wright Brothers are credited with the first flight of a fixed wing aircraft in 1903. In the 9th and 11th centuries, flight was briefly achieved in gliders - but the pilots were injured.

  • The bicycle was invented in the early 1800s in Germany. Over 200 years later, bicycles are enjoying a resurging popularity - for adults - due to their "earth friendly" profile.

  • The V2 rocket, launched in Nazi Germany in 1942, was the first step to space flight. The Soviet Union, in 1957, launched a satellite - Sputnik - and the "space race" was on.

  • While there may have been earlier examples of the automobile - a French engineer built a a steam-powered tricycle in 1769, Karl Benz as well as Gottlieb Daimler, with his partner Wilhelm Maybach, filed patents for the automobile on the same day in 1886. They had never met and filed the patents in different cities in Germany. Even today, you may recognize those surnames.

These vintage photos include almost every method of transportation used in the last two centuries.