Taylors Tavern

The first military aerial reconnaissance in American history took place on June 24, 1861 when  Thaddeus Lowe, with the help of Federal troops from Buffalo ascended in his gas filled balloon from Taylor's Tavern, a high point in Falls Church at the edge of Union territory.  Over the course of two days he made several ascensionsfrom this high point to observe and map Confederate positions.  His original success led the army to sponsor the construction of the first military balloon, the Union.