Lost Worlds

Season 2 Episode 15

Age of Airships

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Aired Monday 9:00 PM Nov 07, 2007 on The History Channel
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Age of Airships
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Airships flew years before the Wright Brothers flew the first airplane, yet it has been almost forgotten. The largest aircraft ever built was an airship. The first aerial bombardment of one nation by another was conducted using airships and they still are the only airborne aircraft carriers ever built. Follow the rise and fall of the airship and discover the shining future of air travel that never was.moreless
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      • Narrator: In the first half of the 20th century the dream of flight created some of the most extraordinary structures the world has ever seen. Before the first airplane took off, rigid airships offered the possibility of mass air travel, and a small band of visionaries was planning the construction of the biggest aircraft ever built. They would form the world's first airline, carry out the first aerial bombardment of foreign cities, Germany envisioned an empire linked by these silent giants. And for a while it seemed like the airship was poised to conquer the skies. Now, our investigators are going to explore this forgotten era and examine the world of the airship builders. They'll travel to the place where the first prototype flew, they'll uncover the ingenious technology which made construction on this scale possible, they'll enter the U.S. Navy's Blimp Barns, wooden buildings so large that they have their own micro-climate and they'll reveal the vital, but little known, role that airships played in World War II.

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