The LZ 1 being observed by some of the local children.

On July 2nd, in the year 1900, The people of Friedrichshafen, Germany came out to witness a momentous occasion. For two years a huge floating building had been anchored on lake Bodensee and in this building, the local Count, Ferdinand von Zeppelin had been spending all his time and resources with a small band of engineers and builders. As the building had progressed, the Count was often made the object of ridicule and jokes. Many thought that the count was squandering his family's savings on a ridiculous idea that could never work. That afternoon, the people of Friedrichshafen would get a glimpse of the future. A steam launch chugged over to the shed and slowly proceeded to draw out a huge cigar shaped airship. Although air ships had been flown for almost 50 years, this was a special airship. This was the very first of the ridged airships. The first to have a skeleton built around bags of lifting gas. The Count's reasoning for attempting this new and radical design was for several reasons. First, the Count reasoned that a solid outer shell would allow an airship to travel at much greater speeds with out worrying about air pressure buckling in the nose of the airship. Second, he hoped that this design would make for a solid long range scout ship capable of military service. Something that could be used for missions of great duration and could bring it's crew home with vital information from the enemy lines. Another reason for the aluminum skeleton, was to make the airship strong enough to fly through less than ideal weather conditions with out deforming or simply folding in on its self. Something that was a very real threat to the nonrigid ships being flown at the