Capt. Bryan’s Confederate Observation Balloon Kirby-Smith Camp #1209 has a new exhibit that will be part of its educational displays. The Confederate Observation Balloon represents Capt. John Randolph Bryan’s balloon while attached to Gen. J. B. Magruder’s headquarters before Yorktown. His trips in the balloon were one of the most unique experiences of the War Between the States, as it was doubtless the first time a balloon was used by the Confederate Forces in order to ascertain the position and strength of the Union forces. It will add to the interest of this story to know that at the time Captain Bryan was making his ascensions from the Confederate lines Gen. Fitz John Porter was performing the same service for the Union army which lay facing the Confederates.