The Writer’s Almanac for Thursday, September 5, 2019 …

James Glaisher and Henry Tracey Coxwell broke the world record for altitude on this date in 1862.Glaisher was a British meteorologist, and he wanted to investigate what happened to water vapor at different altitudes. The country had just been through a period of extended drought, and there was much interest in studying rain in particular, and weather in general.

http://www.garrisonkeillor.com/radio/twa-the-writers-almanac-for-september-5-2019/