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Past Issues

Volume 10, Number 3 - 3rd Quarter 2010

LOGBOOK is a quarterly magazine covering the entire spectrum of international aviation history, from the first tentative attempts at flight, to history that was made just yesterday.

LOGBOOK is a distinctive publication in the field of aviation history. At LOGBOOK we certainly enjoy bringing you in-depth articles written by some of the world’s premier aviation historians. More importantly, however, we also enjoy working with, actively encouraging and publishing the first-time, one-time and fledgling author. These are the folks who actually lived the aviation history they are writing about, which lets the reader experience the action from a unique perspective. This allows LOGBOOK to bring you aviation history you will find no other place.

Back Issue: Available.
 

World War One - "Knights of the Air" and Chivalry's Final Moments

The First Ace - Adolphe Celestin Pergoud The First Ace - Adolphe Celestin Pergoud
Aerial combat on the Western Front was savage in World War One. The competing planes’ open cockpits and relatively slow speeds often forced pilots into close, brutal, almost personal contact. Many of the competing pilots recognized the enemy plane’s markings or insignia much like a medieval knight might learn to recognize an enemy’s shield or helmet. Unlike the mass slaughter on the ground, air battles were fought with man pitted against man as in the days of the medieval knights. In this respect, the fighter pilot’s machine gun was not different from the knight’s lance. Newspaper and magazine readers became fascinated with stories about these pilots and the name the ‘Knights of the Air,’ a phrase coined in the media, soon became well known. Knighthood, at least in the medieval world, implied a code of chivalry. While Chivalry was certainly dead in the mass-slaughter of the trenches, it was alive in the air. However, it was almost always limited to honoring a dead pilot at his funeral.
Herb Kugel tracks this change of modern air warfare.
 

The Last Carvairs

Carvair Number 20 - C-GAAH  - of Hawkair. Carvair Number 20 - C-GAAH - of Hawkair.
After 48 years of service since the first test flight on 21 June 1961, one of the most unique transport aircraft in aviation history is passing into the recesses of time. Only two Aviation Traders ATL-98 Carvairs survive – one ATL-98A operational in Texas and a second ATL-98(F) stored in South Africa.
Originally developed as a replacement for the aging Bristol Mk.32 car-ferry fleet, it eventually became the civilian and military contract workhorse for oversized cargo before the introduction of more modern guppies and other large capacity cargo aircraft. The high bulk 18,000-pound payload ATL-98 Carvair, with its ability to operate into short and unimproved fields, has transported oil rigs, radio towers, whales, reindeer, elephants, other aircraft – both damaged and new, gold bullion, armored cars, pigs, monkeys, snakes, auto parts, nuclear material, rockets, orchestras, rock groups, refugees and royalty. It has seen combat from the Congo to Cambodia, transporting armed and wounded troops while taking hits from ground fire. The ATL-98 has appeared in movies such as “Goldfinger” and was used in numerous advertising campaigns to promote imported products that were delivered by the Carvair.
Patrick Dean has written an in-depth book covering all 21 Carvairs. Here he tells of the last two left.
 

I Vas Only Following Orderss

The Mightly Douglas DC-8 - Cargo Hauler of Choice. The Mightly Douglas DC-8 - Cargo Hauler of Choice.
The time frame is late seventies, early eighties. Thirteen to fifteen freight dogs file noisily into the DC-8 new-hire classroom at Willow Run Airport, west of Detroit. One by one they fall deathly quiet as they cross the threshold and take their seats. What has silenced them is the presence of a man with his back to them writing on the green chalkboard. The first line is his name in large capital letters: BILL R____________. Below that he continued, printing these words:
AMERICAN
BRANIFF
CONTINENTAL
DELTA
EASTERN
NORTHWEST
UNITED
The words intrigued them, but it was the man’s presence itself that had quieted them. His name, the same as that of the airline, was known throughout not only the non-sked cargo industry, but indeed the entire airline world. That the owner himself, in particular this tough-as-nails owner, would greet them on the first day – or any day – was almost too much to take in. None of these experienced airmen expected a warm greeting from Mr. R, given his reputation.
“WHO CAN TELL ME WHAT THESE NAMES REPRESENT?” he challenged.
Silence. No one wanted to answer wrongly and be made a fool of on the first day of class.
“NOBODY?” he asked.
“WELL I’LL TELL YOU WHAT THEY MEAN. They are all airlines for which YOU-DO-NOT-WORK. If you could, you would; but since you can’t, you belong to me! I own you – hence the “dog” in freight dog – and you’ll do exactly as I say or you’ll no longer be employed here.” With that, he stormed out of a room so quiet you could hear the rush of air that the proverbial pin made in its drop to the floor.
Paul Patterson tells of his life flying cargo around the world.