Welcome to the first official newsletter of 2021 (and the second in our new and improved template). With vaccines starting to become available (albeit slowly), and with the Government's goal of having the majority of Canadians vaccinated by September, I hope this news helps people face the upcoming months with more hope. Yes, the pandemic is still ongoing, and we still need to endure restrictions and follow public health measure, but we might be less than nine months away from starting to see our "old normal" start to return. We might really be past the half way mark in this pandemic, and this gives me hope. I hope this prospect encourages you too! We made it this far, so we can make it to the end!
Please remember that the CAHS is a not-for-profit charity dependent on consistent income streams (membership renewals, donations, and publication and merchandise sales) in order to pay its its operational bills. The first part of the pandemic hit the CAHS hard financially, but we did make it through 2020 with the help of our generous members and donors. But 2021 is a new year with new financial commitments, that includes maintaining the website, producing/printing/mailing the Journal, and other mandatory operational bills.
We ask that you make sure your membership is up-to-date for 2021, and if you are able to donate, this would be extremely appreciated! We also invite you to browse the merchandise we have for sale at discounted rates. Is there an aviation book or calendar you did not get for Christmas? You can still get a copy for yourself or for a friend for an upcoming birthday! Also watch for announcements about new book offerings from author Shirlee Matheson - we look forward to launching these in upcoming newsletters.
Please contact me here, if you need to enquire about your membership status or would like to learn more about donating to the CAHS or contributing to special projects that help fund our efforts. Thanks again for your support and generosity, and here's to an ever improving 2021!!
Dr. Rachel Lea Heide, National Treasurer,
Membership Administration, and Digital/Special Projects Co-ordinator,
Click the button above or, if you have a recent smartphone, simply point its camera app at the on-screen QR code below to Donate via mobile.
PS: I finished creating all the donation tax receipts this past weekend, and they are being emailed to the donors' email addresses we have on file. If you have not found your tax receipt in your email inbox by the end of 1 March, please contact me to get your copy.
We still have limited availability on these recent additions left in the e-shop…
The annual CAHS Aviation Art Calendar, 2021 edition is a 13-month calendar featuring 13 full colour aviation artworks by talented artists from within the CAHS membership. The price of $20 each (shipping included) is hard to beat!
We are still able to offer both volumes of Flight at a special discount of $17 each, or $32 for the pair, plus shipping. Each volume features approximately 3 dozen short Canadian aviation stories, including pieces contributions by CAHS members Gary Williams and Will Chabun.
The variety of coverage appeals to those interested in the entire gamut of Canadian aviation experiences.
Airlift to the Top of the World: The Royal Air Force and the British Greenland Expedition 1951-1954 is the definitive text on this rarely-covered subject. Illustrated throughout – an enjoyable, educational read, and a visual feast.
Our own CAHS Journal manages to feature accounts of aviation trials and tribulations in the High Arctic from time to time, but this story is one rarely seen, even among the pages of our UK-based counterparts.
It is also a diverse one, featuring Danish Cansos, RAF Sunderlands, JATO-boosted Albatrosses and Skytrains, field-repairs in less than ideal conditions, polar aviator (with an early-career Canadian connection) Bernt Balchen, and a climbing-enthusiast Royal Navy officer.
Within recent weeks, a Journal availability bulletin (the adjacent image shows the email header graphic) was emailed to all current CAHS National Members with an email address on record, inviting them to access CAHS Journal Volume 57, Number 1 (Spring 2019), via a download from our website. In addition to being able to view and download a high resolution PDF copy (i.e. the digital edition) of the latest Journal, the download page also features a Review Your Membership tab, the latest President’s Message from CAHS President Gary Williams under another tab, and a Support Your CAHS tab. The new system reduces the burden file attachments impose on recipient email in-boxes when delivering Journal digital editions to Members, while at the same time providing an at-a-glance way to review, and if necessary renew, your CAHS National Membership.
An additional item noted in the bulletin was the launch of our website Members’ Only area (see adjacent graphic for the starting page). It is accessed via the new LOG IN item you may have noticed in our site’s main menu. At present, this part of the site hosts a repository of the nearly10 years worth of CAHS Journal digital editions produced since 2010. Going forward, all new Journal digital editions will be uploaded to this area of the site immediately upon publication, and an availability bulletin will be sent to members. We also have a plan in place to incrementally add PDF replicas of legacy Journal editions (those produced before 2010) to the Members’ Only area.
The ultimate goal is for all CAHS National Members with access to the internet to be a few clicks away from reading, on-screen, all Journals published to date.
If you have received the bulletin and already accessed the latest digital edition – or any of the more than 3 dozen Journals now a few mouse-clicks or tablet-taps away in this new Members’ Only area – we trust you found the log-in and access processes to be straightforward.
If you are a current CAHS National Member (or one recently expired but still within the grace period) and did not get that CAHS Journal Volume 57 Number 1 (Spring 2019) digital edition email, it may be that the bulletin’s “From” address was rejected by your email service provider’s spam-protection measures. This issue was realized only after the bulletin was sent out and has since been rectified via a standard verification process. With that, we will be resending a slightly revised bulletin within a day or two of this e-newsletter. With the revision, we've also taken the opportunity to fix a few wonky links that were found since.
On a related note, National Members and non-member e-newsletter subscribers alike who did not receive our December 2020 e-newsletter due to the problem noted above, can find it in our on-site archive here.
Question:After which comic strip character was the RAF’s Wellington bomber named?
Hint:Have you read No Prouder Place, by David L. Bashow?
Question: What was the total number of personnel in the RCAF at the beginning, and at the end, of the Second World War? What was the authorized strength after the war’s end, and how long did it take to reach that strength?
Hint:Terry Leversedge goes into detail about the RCAF in his book, Canadian Combat and Support Aircraft.
Question:There was only one Canadian squadron named after a person. Which squadron was it, and after whom was it named?
Hint:You might find this clue in the same source as one of the other questions.
December 2020 Aviation Moments Quiz Answers:
Question One: Why did a flight of two airplanes turn tragic over Regina in the fall of 1921?
Answer: On October 7, 1921 a man identified as L. Reece was killed while attempting to change from one plane to another in flight over Regina. Reece was using a rope ladder to climb from one Canuck (a Canadian-built Curtiss Jenny flown by pioneering local aviator Roland Groome) to another (flown by a man from Yorkton named Wallace). Reece was partway up when he lost his grip and fell to his death somewhere on the Legislative grounds in south Regina. A subsequent inquiry cleared both pilots, but, as a 1997 aviation history calendar noted, "regulations (were) introduced to prevent further occurrences.”
Question Two: The PBYs the RCAF received in 1941-42 were of three different variants with three different names. What were the three names and how did they differ?
Answer: The three names for the different variants were: “Catalina” flying boats which were built to British specifications in the United States and released by the British to Canada; “Canso” flying boats which were built to RCAF specifications; and the “Canso A” amphibian version, also built to RCAF specifications and which had retractable wheels for operation from runways.
Question Three: What percentage of the air that went through the engines of the Arrow ended up in the air conditioning system? What were the important areas in the Arrow to have controlled temperature?
Answer: About ten percent of the air flow that went through the engines ended up in the air conditioning system. Important areas to have controlled temperature and pressure were the cockpit, armament pack, radome and wheel well.
More Canadian Aviation Moments
– In the News –
Hydrogen Gas revisted!
The Historical Use of Hydrogen Gas
Once widely believed myths can be very difficult to reverse, even if established on incorrect information. Such was the case once with tomatoes and hemp and is currently the case in Canada with the use of hydrogen gas bans. Historically enshrined in its air regulations, Canada states that “Hydrogen is not an acceptable lifting gas for use in airships”. Decided on a poorly designed chemistry experiment in the 1900s, our knowledge on hydrogen gas has since evolved, to learn more, click here.
For additional pieces of historical information on airship stories you can search the CAHS site here. Another resource can also be found in Bernie Shaw’s “After the Arrow”, which touches on attempted rebirths of airship technology in post-Avro Arrow Canada.
A New Airport Name
Looking to honour a Canadian aviation pioneer, a petition has been created to change the Edmonton International Airport name to Edmonton Max Ward International Airport. Max Ward began his aviation career in the RCAF and would go on to flying bush planes in the north and establishing his own company Wardair, which successfully grew into one of Canada’s largest scheduled carriers. The petition is open for signatures until 4 March 2021. If you would like to support the name change by signing the petition, please click here.
Select a chapter to discover what they have been up to since the last newsletter
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The Canadian Aviation Historical Society (CAHS)
P.O. Box 2700 • Station D • Ottawa • Ontario • K1P 5W7