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Past Issues

Volume 12, Number 1 - 1st Quarter 2014

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
 

Hands Across America - The 1949 Air Tour

The morning of 21 May 1949, was hardly a normal one at the small Troutdale airport, east of Portland, Oregon. The weather seemed normal enough, cool, overcast, with the intermittent showers typical of that time of year, but the bustle of activity surrounding the Northwest Aviation hangar gave a clear indication that this was far from a routine morning. Some fifty-five private aircraft and one olive drab United States Air Force C-47 – the military variant of the Douglas DC-3 – were surrounded by a crowd of about 120 spectators as the squadron of planes prepared for departure.
With all restrictions on civil aviation lifted at the end of the Second World War, Americans took to the skies in record numbers. The squadron of civil aircraft that had gathered that spring morning in Troutdale was the inspiration of the Portland, Oregon, Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber’s Aviation Committee had sought to revive the popular air tours common during the years between the two world wars as a vehicle for promoting the interests of the City of Portland. For 1949 the Chamber envisioned a much more ambitious undertaking, an unprecedented cross country air tour, from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine, “The most ambitious tour of its kind ever attempted,” tour leader L.S. “Doc” White boasted, “The first ever to cross the continent from Astoria to the Atlantic and back.”
Bill Alley tells the story.
 

Navigating the North Atlantic - 1950/60

A Lockheed NC-121K - BuNo 141292 - assigned to VAQ-33. A Lockheed NC-121K - BuNo 141292 - assigned to VAQ-33.
Today’s long range aircraft – trans-oceanic, trans-polar, etc… - use highly sophisticated navigational systems, usually involving some sort of inertial and/or Global Positioning System (GPS) equipment. At any moment a precise location can be determined. Additionally, with modern Flight Management Systems, future tracks and estimated times of arrival, can all be predicted with incredible accuracy, all at the touch of a simple keypad.
We are pleased to present an addendum to Lieutenant Commander Robert Shaver’s fine personal account of flying the North Atlantic Distant Early Warning Barrier, back in the late 1950s/early 1960s, which appeared in the last issue of LOGBOOK (Volume11, Number 4). Although the Lockheed WV-2 Warning Star aircraft he flew – first as a navigator, then as a pilot – was equipped with the latest navigation equipment of the day, it was still a fine art to determine the accurate location of your aircraft. And, it was certainly more that just monitoring a computer screen. Considering that the mission of the Warning Star’s crew was to detect, track and report an incoming Soviet threat, this accuracy is all the more vital. After all, if you didn’t know where you were, how could you report the position of an inbound threat?
LCdr Bob Shaver USN (Retired) gives a primer on the old naviagation techniques.
 

Graf Zeppelin - Hitler's Aircraft Carrier, Part 1

The KMS Graf Zeppelin. The KMS Graf Zeppelin.
Today, in the frigid depths of the Baltic Sea, 34 miles (55 km) off the Polish port of Wladyslawowo – near Gdynia – lies the 70-year old wreck of the only aircraft carrier ever launched for the Kriegsmarine – the German Navy. How it got there is a mystery, which only now is being revealed as undersea expeditions explore the 861-foot (262.5m) long hulk. But at one point in its neutered history it represented the dream of Hitler’s navy to take the Luftwaffe’s air power onto the high seas. During their halcyon days of 1940, when one Nazi conquest followed another, this noble warship was being outfitted at Kiel, specific aircraft types were being developed to fly from her 800-foot (244m) flight deck, and a Trägergeschwader (TrG or carrier [air] wing) comprising one gruppe each of fighters and dive-bombers was formed for that very purpose.
Colonel Douglas Dildy USAF (Retired) begins the first of four-part series on this little known aircraft carrier.