Aux Origines d&

Aux Origines d'Air France CFRNA-CIDNA

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Aux Origines d'Air France CFRNA-CIDNA

Première Compagnie aérienne européenne 1920-1933

Author:Maryla Boutineau
Dimensions:8.3" x 11.7"
Item No. 9782840485629

Europe, fragmented by the fall of century-old empires at the end of the Great War, had to reinvent itself. Visionary politicians wanted to create contacts between existing and new countries that emerged on redrawing the map after World War I, but the multiplicity of borders and the slowness of transport were impediments to effective collaboration. Pierre de Fleurieu, a 23-year-old fighter aviation hero, provided the solution. Thanks to the financial support of the Marmorosch Blank Bank, the French State and several European countries, he designed and set up the Compagnie Franco-Roumaine de Navigation l'Air —the first truly European airline which, in 1922, controlled a network from Paris to Istanbul. The aircraft manufacturer Henri Potez, who shared Pierre de Fleurieu’s ideas on the future of commercial aviation, converted military planes into civilian planes in record time, and former fighter pilots quickly retrained to become airline pilots; military airports were equipped with terminals and workshops. As early as 1923, CFRNA planes carried passengers, cargo and mail, day and night. The company also played a major role in improving safety with the development of weather forecasts and the use of TSF on board the aircraft. In 1925, the CFRNA changed its name to CIDNA—International Air Navigation Company. In 1933, the French state united the five major French airlines— Air Union, Air Orient, Farman Lines, Aéropostale and CIDNA—to form Air France. From its inception, the national airline took over the ground infrastructure of its predecessors, and opened its doors to experienced CIDNA staff. It also benefited from the immense prestige of French aeronautics created during the thirteen-year operations of CFRNA-CIDNA throughout Europe. Although the Company’s work suffered during World War II following the outbreak of the Cold War and beyond its huge influence on the development of European aviation is undeniable.