Although it is not known exactly when Cullom had the first balloon ascension, there is a newspaper account from 1898 of one taking place that August and reporting it as a success.
Some even assume that Cullom holds the distinction of having kept the tradition of a balloon ascension during the annual August Celebration longer than any other town in the United States.
One of the best known balloonists that came to Cullom was Claude Shafer. He would jump from the balloon with a parachute. Professor Shafer made the annual trek to Cullom until the 1960’s when Peter Krieg took over the annual tradition.
These photos were used in the 1982 Centennial Pageant. I’ve got more, I’ll post them later…