Vintage Photo: Flying Machine

Working on a series of black and white negatives, I came across this photo. My curiosity immediately went into overdrive. I would love to know the history surrounding this moment. I am assuming these gentlemen are working on a flying machine. Obviously, I do not know the exact details.

In my opinion, the three men standing in front of a balloon are the ones who work on the flying machine. Now, the three men standing toward the right of the photo reminds me of investors into the project.  What do you think? Does anyone have any input into the photo?

Until next time….peace