Coey & the Chicago

This image was published in the Indianapolis Star on June 6, 1909 as part of the paper's coverage of the June 5, 1909 national balloon championship hosted at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Charles A. Coey was the pilot for the largest balloon in the race, the massive 110,000 cubic foot Chicago, pictured here on its ascension at the start of the race. The balloon was so large it did not conform to regulations for the national championship race and had to be confined to the secondary handicap trophy race. The caption of this photo reports that a man named Jack Bennett had joined Coey as his assistant. Bennett was probably the last of the competitors to be named. Mrs. Coey, wife of the aviator who was also the first woman to ascend from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in a balloon. 

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