Aviation Historian 39
G.Endres - Baltic Triangles
Nikolai Veelmann in his de Havilland D.H.9, serial 30. Built by Cubitt Ltd of Croydon and powered by a Siddeley Puma engine, the aircraft was formerly D660 with the Royal Flying Corps, before being acquired by the Estonian Air Company. Its career in the Baltic was relatively short; it was destroyed in a crash in February 1920.
Junkers Ju 52/3m ES-AUL (c/n 6633) at Helsinki on the occasion of the inaugural Tallinn-Helsinki service run jointly by Estonia’s A/S AGO and Finland’s Aero O/Y, on April 2, 1940. Both of the Estonian Ju 52/3ms were taken over by Aeroflot that year, to serve with the Soviet airline’s Baltic Directorate.
A Junkers F 13 of Estonian airline A/S Aeronaut passes overhead the company’s hangar at Lasnamae in the nation’s capital Tallinn circa 1923-24. The German influence on aviation was strong in the Baltics in the 1920s, Junkers having established the Osteuropa Union and, later, Nordeuropa Union consortia, which played a major part in establishing commercial services in the Baltic states and Finland.
Formerly D-260 in Germany, Junkers F 13 c/n 0650 became E 15 in Aeronaut service, and was named Eisvogel (Kingfisher). The other two, E 13 and E 16, were respectively named Schwan (Swan) and Steinschmatzer (Wheatear). E 15 was operated on skis during the winter, and is seen here preparing to depart Helsinki for Tallinn.
The three Junkers F 13s and two of the six Sablatnig P IIIs of the A/S Aeronaut fleet beside the company’s hangar at Lasnamae in 1925. The P IIIs were built by Estonian manufacturer Dvigatel, which had been established in Tallinn in 1897 and produced railway wagons.
Two Junkers F 13s bore the Latvian registration B-LATB. The first, c/n 631, named Fasan, was acquired from Danziger Luftpost shortly after the Latvian company’s formation. When it crashed the second (c/n 570), named Eule, was acquired as a replacement. It is not clear which is seen here.
The first of the three dependable Junkers F 13s acquired by A/S Aeronaut was registered E 13 and named Schwan; it was used as a floatplane on the company’s Tallinn-Helsinki service from June 1923. It is seen here being craned from the quayside on to the water at Tallinn; just visible in the cockpit is Junkers pilot Heinz Grotwahl.
Junkers F 13 B-LATA (c/n 579) Condor of Latvijas Gaisa Satiksmes Akciju Sabiedriba (Latvian Air Service Company - known as Lettlandische Luftverkehrs in Germany) was severely damaged when forced to alight on the frozen sea off Helsinki on March 10, 1926. It was returned to Germany to assume its original identity, D-202.
One of the two de Havilland D.H.89 Dragon Rapides acquired by Latvia’s Valsts Gaisa Satiksme (State Air Service) in May 1937 and used on Riga-Ventspils-Liepaja services. Given the civil registrations YL-ABC and 'ABD, both were later used by Aeroflot throughout 1940 until the Luftwaffe took them over from the spring of 1941.
Percival Q.6s LY-SOA and LY-SOB were the only two aircraft operated by Lietuvos Oro Linijos. When Lithuania was annexed by the Soviet Union in June 1940, both were allocated to Aeroflot’s Baltic Directorate as CCCP-C124 and CCCP-C125. One went to Moscow and the other was captured by the Germans in July 1941.
In the summer of 1938 British manufacturer Percival received an order for two of its handsome Q.6 twin-engined transports from the newly established Lietuvos Oro Linijos (Lithuanian Air Lines), which had rejected some 14 other types of aircraft for its services. The pair were delivered to Lithuania during September 1-9, 1938.