The earliest examples of electronically guided model aircraft were hydrogen-filled model airships of the late 19th century. They were flown as a music hall act around theater auditoriums using a basic form of spark-emitted radio signal.
There are many types of radio-controlled aircraft. For beginning hobbyists, there are park flyers and trainers. For more experienced pilots there are glow plug engine, electric powered and sailplane aircraft. For expert flyers, jets, pylon racers, helicopters, autogyros, 3D aircraft, and other high-end competition aircraft provide adequate challenge. Some models are made to look and operate like a bird instead. Replicating historic and little known types and makes of full-size aircraft as “flying scale” models, which are also possible with control line and free flight types of model aircraft, actually reach their maximum realism and behavior when built for radio-control flying.
This is just a brief description of the beginnings of RC aircraft. Read more in Wikipedia to learn more about the history of radio controlled aircraft.