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During the 19th century, rocket enthusiasts and inventors began to appear in almost every country. Some people thought these early rocket pioneers were geniuses, and others thought they were crazy. Claude Ruggieri, an Italian living in Paris, apparently rocketed small animals into space as early as 1806. The payloads were recovered by parachute. As depicted here by artist Larry Toschik, French authorities were not always impressed with rocket research. They halted Ruggieri's plans to launch a small boy using a rocket cluster. (Reproduced from a drawing by Larry Toschik and presented here courtesy of the artist and Motorola Inc.)