That “other” Canadian airline Canadian Pacific Air Lines / C P Air Canadian Airlines aka “Empress”

Written by Charlie Dolan.

While Air Canada managed to operate under only two names, “Trans Canada Airlines” and “Air Canada”, their chief rival in the northern skies had several names and operational eras. What began as an amalgamation of bush carriers became Canadian Pacific Air Lines in 1942. This identity worked well and lasted until 1968 when the carrier became “C P Air” and adopted the logo shared with CP Rail, CP Ships, CP Hotels and CP telecommunications. The airline was assigned the color orange in the corporate logo scheme and this color was attached to not only letterheads but to the aircraft in the fleet. They looked impressive to say the least. As an added bonus, they were impossible to miss in the pattern.

During the mid to late 1980s, the urge to merge hit the Canadian air carrier industry and CP Air merged with Nordair and Eastern Provincial Airways. Shortly after that, the carrier was bought by Pacific Western Airlines and became “Canadian Airlines”.

The carrier lasted until 2000, when it was absorbed by Air Canada, the dominant airline in the skies to our north.

Future articles will show the insignia of the carriers which became Canadian (Canadien) Airlines, but today we will concentrate on Canadian Pacific Air Lines, C P Air and Canadian Airlines.

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Oh, Canada – Air Canada

Written by Charlie Dolan

Air Canada (AC – ACA) began life as Trans Canada Airlines in 1937. It operated under that name (in English) until 1965, when the carrier adopted its French name “Air Canada” as its identity as the flag carrier for our neighbor to the north. The change of name was reflected in new livery for the aircraft, new corporate logos and extensive uniform changes.  Over the years, Air Canada and Canadian (Canadien) Pacific Air Lines were the major competitors for air travel by Canadians. Smaller carriers, such as Nordair, Quebecair, Pacific Western Airlines and Eastern Provincial Airways were merged into one or the other of the big two carriers. It was during this period that Canadian Pacific Air Lines became Canadian (ien) Airlines. In 2000, Air Canada acquired Canadian Airlines, thus removing its biggest competitor.

In 2019, Air Canada received approval to purchase Transat A. T., which was the parent company of Air Transat. It’s anyone’s guess as to how large Air Canada will grow.

Future (several) articles will cover other Canadian airline companies. I was stationed at Dorval Airport (CYUL) for eight years and that was where I began collecting.

Wing and cap badge for Trans Canada Air Lines

TCA flight engineer wing. An “E” replaces the “speedbird” at the center of the wing. The navigator’s wing had an “N” at the center.

TCA cap with badge

Bullion TCA wing and cap badge circa 1949 during a “tiff” with BOAC when the “speedbird” was removed from the uniforms. The metal TCA insignia with the “speedbird” returned and were used untll 1965, when Air Canada became the new name

Air Canada’s first insignia. The cap badge was short lived, but the wing is a mystery to me and other collectors. The wing had various colors behind the maple leaf. I have seen blue, yellow, white, red and green (or turquoise) enamel. Whether these colors represented crew members’ home base or job  classification has not been determined. Air Canada pioneers and the wing manufacturer hav been unable to answer the question. Any information would be greatly appreciated

More colorful cap badge and squared off wing in metal and bullion. These were used in the 1960s and I have seen white behind the maple leaf of the cap badge which might be related to the color issue with the former wing insignia. All pilot ratings wore the same style wing

New wings of the 1980s indicated the rating of the pilots. Captains had three stars over the center disc, which was surrounded with leaves.  First Offices had leaves around the disc, but no stars. Second officers had a plain disc

The current style wing has the disc in red with the maple leaf in brass metal color. With only two flight crew, the F.O has a plain disc and the Captain has a wreath around the disc. I understand that the new cap badge has the maple leaf and circle in gold bullion thread, but the scroll with “Air Canada” has been deleted. A plan to have “AIR CANADA” in gold bullion at the front of the chin strap was not adopted

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Carriers of the Caribbean

Written by Charlie Dolan

As I continue to bounce around the globe, I thought that after the recent meteorological events of the past month called for a visit to the Caribbean. When my wife and I were stationed in Bermuda between 2002 and 2007, we experienced two hurricanes, but nothing like the devastation wrought on the Bahama Islands. We hunkered down for almost a full day during each event, but our houses withstood the winds. I can’t begin to understand what the people on Abaco went through or when they will be able return to their former lives.

I will open the display with the wings of Bahamasair. I am not sure which of the wings has the proper orientation, but I suspect that the bullion thread wing is aligned properly. The solder on the metal might have allowed slippage during assembly.

The ALM insignia show six stars. The later insignia lost one of the stars when Aruba became independent. Air Jamaica was helped “off the ground” by Air Canada which sent crews to train the local pilots on the operation of the Boeing 727s, DC- 8s and 9s, some of which came from Air Canada.

The CDA cap badge of Dominicana shows the outline of the island of Hispaniola, with Haiti and the Dominican Republic in different colors.

With hopes that the tropical cyclone season ends quickly, I attach the wings and badges of the Caribbean carriers.

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While we’re in the neighborhood

Written by Charlie Dolan

The last article I submitted dealt with the air carriers of Australia through the years. Rather than spin the globe severely, let’s just go , as the locals in Bermuda would say, “Down ‘de road a bit.” Or, in this case, a bit north in the Pacific Ocean. Our destination – New Guinea and Papua New Guinea. Because of the distances involved and the difficult topography, air travel was, and remains, a necessity. Back in the late 1970s I was going through an in-flight magazine of one of these companies. I’m not sure which one it was, but a disconcerting fact was that one of the articles dealt with the discovery f a World War II crash site and the recovery of the remains of the crew. A difficult way to reduce the unease of the passengers.

Air New Zealand NZ ANZ 1940 (as TEAL) 1965-present

Air Niugini PX ANG 1973 – present (Papua New Guinea)

Air Pacific Now Fiji Airways FJ FJI . 1947 -present

Mount Cook Airlines NM NZM 1920 – present

New Zealand National Airways Corporation NZ 1947 – 1978 Merged with ANZ

Tasman Empire Airways Limited T.E.A.L. TE 1940 – 1965 Became Air New Zealand

 

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“Down-under” Airlines

Written by Charlie Dolan

Just to keep our heads and globes spinning, I decided to jump from the North Atlantic to the South Pacific for this Log article. Once you have all completed your crossing the Equator ceremonies we’ll get started with looking at those lines which operated under a completely set of constellations. (celestial, not Lockheed).

                     Aeropelican APL PO 1971-1980 (to Ansett)

                        Ansett Airways AAA AN 1936-2002

                    Ansett Flying Boat Service 1952-1974

                      Ansett New South Wales 1990-1993

                    Compass Airlines YM CYM 1990-1993

                   East – West Airlines EW EWA 1947-1993

                              QANTAS QFA 1920-present

                McRobertson Miller Airlines MV 1927-1993

     Trans Australia Airlines TN TAA 1946-1994 (to QANTAS)

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Airlines of the Atlantic

After bouncing around Africa and Asia, it felt right to follow along alphabetically and pay attention to air carriers which operate primarily from bases in or near the Atlantic Ocean. So, make sure you have your anti mal de Mer pills handy and enjoy the images.

Due to its longevity and several mergers, Icelandair is represented with several iterations of insignia. Carriers which formed today’s Icelandair included Flugfelag Islands, Loftleidir and finally Icelandair.  The story behind the two versions of Loftleidir insignia is that the “IAL” for “Iceland Air Loftleidir” was dropped because folks (and guessing those were New Yorkers at KIDL) would point to the insignia and say “Right, Icelandair’s Always Late”.

Air Atlanta Iceland  CC  ABD          1986 – present

Loftleidir         LL                               1944 – 1979

Eagle Air (Arnarflug) IS FEI 1970 – 1995

Greenlandair (Gronlandsfly)  GL GRL  1960 – 2002

Icelandair        FI  ICE                        1937 – present


Loftleidir         LL                               1944 – 1979

SATA (Air Acores)          SP SAT     1947 present (Sociedad Acoreana de Transportes Aereos)

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Airlines of Asia – Past and Present

Written by Charlie Dolan

Air Cambodge RC 1970 – 1975

 Air Lanka UL ALK 1998 – present

Air Viet Nam Hang Khong Viet Nam 1951 -1975

Bangkok Airways PG BKP 1968 – present

Bangladesh Biman Airlines BG BBC 1972 – present

  Cathay Pacific Airways CX CPA 1946 – present

China Airlines CI CAL 1959 – present

 Druk Air Royal Bhutan Airlines KB DRK 1981 – present

 Garuda Indonesia GA GIA 1949 – present

Metal crew wing used by Hang Kong Viet Nam, the former airline of North Vietnam.

Royal Brunei Airlines BI RBA 1975 – present

 

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Several More Carriers of Africa

Written by Charlie Dolan

I have several more air carriers from the African continent, which I had not featured before, as well as a recently acquired metal cap badge of Royal Air Maroc. In many cases, I have either the wing or hat badge of the airline rather than a full set of insignia.  In the case of South African Airlines, several different sets of insignia were issued over the course of many years and represent eras during and after the country’s membership in the British Commonwealth. Several of the SAA variants include the insignia worn by engineer staff. The dates which I have indicated are approximations, if anyone has more accurate information, please share with me.

GI GIB 1960 – 2002

Royal Air Maroc AT RAM 1957 – present

Royal Swazi National Airways ZC RSN 1978 – 1999

South African Airways SA SAA 1934 – present

Commonwealth era cap badge 

1961 – 1971 set

1971 – 1997 set

1997 – present insignia

Uganda Airlines QU UGA 1977 – 2001

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Back to Africa

Written by Charlie Dolan

When the Captain’s Log went digital, I sent in my first column with images of carriers from Africa. Since then I have added a piece or two to my collection and have managed to get clearer images of insignia, which had been in my files, but were not up to publication level. So here are some other airlines which  are operating or have operated from headquarters in Africa.

I recently was given the cap badge of Air Congo filling a gap in my collection, which had existed for ages.

The Oman Aviation insignia were obtained in the early 1980s as I started my collection. As I began to gather data for this article I was unable to pull up much information on the airline. I went back to one of my first reference books, The Airline Hand Book of 1983-84 and found that Oman Aviation operated domestic scheduled and charter service supporting  petroleum development. Their fleet included five Fokker    F-27s, one DeHavilland Twin Otter, five Shorts Skyvans, a Beech King Air and a Cessna 206. It was one of those small air carriers which had impressive insignia.

Saudia has used at least three variations of crew insignia over the years in which I have been collecting. When I was working at BWI Airport a Boeing 707, registered HZ-ACK, arrived to pick up a member of the royal family. I had R.E.J. Davies book about Saudia with me and had the page devoted to the 707 signed by all FOUR captains. It seems that when a royal is aboard the crew is augmented.

So, I hope you will find these new images interesting and informative. I will arrange them in alphabetical order.

                               Air Congo  1961-1971  became Air Zaire

                            Air Mauritius         MK  MAU     1972-present

           Air Namibia            SW  NMB     1946-present

Egypt Air     MS  MSR       1932 (as Misrair) – present

              Ethiopian Airlines    ET  ETH        1945-present

Middle East Airlines       ME  MEA      1946-present

           Nigeria Airways    WT  NGA      1958-2003

     Oman Aviation      WY     1983-?

       Saudia          SV  SVA         1945-present

                 Somali Airlines     HH  SOM       1964-1991

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Airlines of Asia – Past and Present

Written by Charlie Dolan

Air Ceylon         AE             1947 – 1979     Went bankrupt

Air India   (Tata)       1932 -1949       Became Air India

Air India            AI     AIC   1949 – present

Air Koryo          JB     KOR           1950 – present
North Korea’s flag carrier. Only airline awarded one star in 2014 by Skytrax

Air Siam             VG             1970 – 1976

All Nippon Airways   NH    ANA          1952 – present

Ariana Afghan Airlines       FG    AFG           1955 – present
(with breaks during hostilities)

Asiana Airlines           OZ    AAR           1988 – present

C A A C
Civil Aviation Administration of China CA  CCA  1949 – 1988
Split into six smaller operators

Dragonair
Hong Kong Dragon Airlines       KA    HDA          1985 – present

Merpati Nusantara Airlines        MZ    MNA          1962 – 2014

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