History Browser

Search Results

Resource Type > Image

Subject > Armed Forces > Air Forces

Supermarine Spitfire L.F. Mk. IX fighter in the markings of 421 Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Force

Type: Image

The Spitfire Mk. IX was the third-generation of Supermarine's famous fighter, and the final one equipped with a Rolls-Royce Merlin engine. The L.F. Mk. IX was an aircraft optimised for combat at lower altitudes - note the clipped wings shown in this photograph of a surviving example in the collection of the Canadian Aviation Museum. The aircraft bears the 'AU' code letters of 421 'Red Indian' Squadron, Royal Canadian Airforce. 421 Squadron was one of several Canadian fighter squadrons stationed in Europe. (Canadian Department of National Defence, PCN-5234)

Site: National Defence

Bristol Bolingbroke IVT bomber

Type: Image

The Bristol Bolingbroke was a Canadian version of the British light bomber known as the Bristol Blenheim. Bolingbroke was the name given to the Canadian-built version of the Blenheim Mk. IV. Over 600 were built by the Fairchild plant at Longueuil, Quebec, starting in 1939. The Bolingbroke was the first modern, all aluminium aircraft built in Canada, but it was also obsolete before the first example flew. Nevertheless, for lack of anything better, the design was widely used. In July 1942, a Bolingbroke helped sink a Japanese submarine off British Columbia. The photograph shows a surviving Bolingbroke Mk IVT from the collection of the Canadian Aviation Museum. 457 of the Mk IVT were built and used as navigation and gunnery trainers (DND, PCN-5234)

Site: National Defence

Lieutenant, Canadian Air Force, 1920-1924

Type: Image

When the Canadian Air Force was authorized in February 1920, they were given the dark blue uniform seen in this painting of a pilot ranking as a lieutenant. Rank was shown by the traditional army system of crowns and stars, and pilots wore wings on the left breast. King George V granted the designation Royal Canadian Air Force in 1923. When the service was made a permanent part of the Department of National Defence the following year, it adopted the lighter 'RAF blue' uniform worn by its British counterpart. Reconstruction by Ron Volstad. (Canadian Department of National Defence)

Site: National Defence

Squadron-Commander Raymond Collishaw and pilots of No.203 Squadron, Royal Air Force, July 1918

Type: Image

By the end of the First World War, Canadians made up roughly one quarter of the strength of the British Royal Air Force formed in April 1918. More than 8,000 Canadians served in the RAF and its predecessors, the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) and Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS). This photograph shows one famous Canadian fighter pilot, Squadron- Commander Raymond Collishaw (1893-1975), along with his British and Imperial pilots at Allonville, France, July 1918. 208 Squadron was formed in February 1914 as Number 3 Squadron, RNAS. The aircraft in the background are the famous Sopwith F.1 'Camel.' (Library and Archives Canada, PA-002792)

Site: National Defence

Consolidated Liberator B24L-20 bomber

Type: Image

The U.S. Liberator B-24 bomber was assigned to 426 Squadron in 1945 for transport duty between England and India. These aircraft were later used for coastal surveillance. This June 1968 photograph shows an ex-Indian Air Force Liberator during its flight to Canada to join the collection of the Canada Aviation Museum (Canadian Department of National Defence, 68-1276)

Site: National Defence

Royal Canadian Air Force Major, by war artist Margaret Kathleen MacLeod

Type: Image

An electronic reproduction of the watercolour on paper artwork, "Royal Canadian Air Force Major," created by Margaret Kathleen MacLeod.

Site: Canadian War Museum

Vickers Vedette flying boat, Royal Canadian Air Force, late 1920s

Type: Image

The Vickers Vedette was the first commercial aircraft built to a Canadian specification for Canadian conditions. The Royal Canadian Air Force needed an aircraft for forestry survey and fire protection patrols, and Canadian Vickers of Montreal responded with the British-designed Vedette with some adjustments for Canada. The RCAF bought 44 aircraft, which entered service in 1925. They were widely used in Canada's wilderness for communications with isolated communities and for making the photographic surveys needed for the preparation of maps by the Geological Survey of Canada. A replica of a Vedette is on display at the Western Canada Aviation Museum. (Department of National Defence photo)

Site: National Defence

De Havilland Vampire Mk.III fighter, Royal Canadian Air Force

Type: Image

The de Havilland Vampire became the first jet fighter to serve in the Royal Canadian Air Force after 86 of them were received in 1946. Designed in Britain during the Second World War, the Vampire could reach speeds of 445 knots (825 km/h). It was retired in 1958. (Canadian Department of National Defence, PC-251)

Site: National Defence

Westland Lysander IIIa reconnaissance aircraft

Type: Image

The Westland Lysander was a rugged, short-take-off-and-landing aircraft designed for low-level reconnaissance and artillery observation. Although it first flew in 1936, the design was largely obsolete when war broke out. Canadian license-built production of the Lysander II began in 1938 at Malton (today the site of Toronto's Pearson International Airport). The first Royal Canadian Air Force squadron sent to Britain in early 1940 was equipped with Lysander II's. The later-production Lysander IIIa seen in this photograph is in the collection of the Canadian Aviation Museum. The Lysander IIIa was used mainly as a target tugs for anti-aircraft artillery practice. (Canadian Department of National Defence, PCN-5244)

Site: National Defence

Canadair CL-13 Sabre Mk VI fighter, 434 'Bluenose' Fighter Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Force, circa 1958-1962

Type: Image

This excellent American fighter was the main combat aircraft of the Canadian air force during the 1950s, capable of reaching speeds of 527 knots (975 km/h). Canadair made large numbers of North American F-86s in Montreal as the CL-13, using Canadian Orenda engines that were more powerful than the American engines. The Canadian flag replaced the tricolour strip on the rear aileron in 1954. (Canadian Department of National Defence, PCN-2664)

Site: National Defence