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Alberta's Aviation Heritage
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The First Aeroplanes

World War I Planes

Early Commercial Planes

Military Planes of World War II

Post World War II Planes

Military Planes


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Alberta Aviation Museum Tour

The Planes

Curtiss-type biplaneThey were heavier than the air that they were designed to fly in. They were bold and innovative—at times they were dangerous and unpredictable—and they were often as memorable as the larger than life human personalities who dared to use them. They were the airplanes. Western Airlines aircraft at Municipal Airport

The plane evolved in step with human understanding of flight. While initial plane designs were often clumsy and inefficient, these early flyers paved the way for much more sophisticated designs later on. Planes would soon prove to be an invaluable tool in exploration, warfare, transport and travel.

Captain Fred McCall’s AirplaneAs airplanes became more commonplace in Alberta and elsewhere, the map of Alberta began to change. Aerial surveys could bring Albertans a greater understanding of the geographical and geological layout of their province, while commercial airlines allowed for more rapid travel throughout. Suddenly, remote Alberta towns and villages were only hours away, instead of days.

Here are the stories of some of the planes that played a role in the development of Alberta’s aviation industry. Each aircraft stands as a testament to the human innovation that created it, as well as a legacy to the Alberta dream of flight.

Vera Dowling

The Wellington Bomber Incident – Vera Dowling
Vera recalls an incident in which she had to deliver an unsafe Wellington bomber to another airbase.
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Alberta's Aviation Heritage

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