Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

We’ve seen here a lot of the contemporary Russian air force, but what about 90 years ago, what did it look like? This is how. Horses, horses, some planes, horses again, no pavement on the runways, wooden sleds and more. Let’s see it in some more detail inside. At that time, Poland was a part of the Russian empire and the Russian air force had a base there. Here people are cleaning the air field and… tramp down the ground with their legs in order to get more hard surface for the planes.

 

Russian Airforce of 1915

They say these photos were taken on January 1st, 1915. 99 years ago, on the first day after the new year party. Probably not the funniest day to go and work on an airfield.

Russian Airforce of 1915

And here soldiers unload the parts of the airplanes that have arrived.. by train! Now its 2nd February of the same year.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Still unloading some more.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

And here is a crashed plane. Two days after the planes were unloaded from the train.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Yeah, learning to fly.

Russian Airforce of 1915

And here soldiers are employed for some destruction – they are removing the phone poles of the future airfield, the one where they were tramping the ground. No more phone lines here. It’s a serious air base now. Russian Airforce of 1915

Also some marching to keep soldiers in form.Russian Airforce of 1915

..and building new phone lines! Now across the roads.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

And assembling some more planes. This one is for the leader of the flight squadron.

Russian Airforce of 1915

And here is the leader, ready to fly for some scouting. Russian Airforce of 1915

Filling a hydrogen balloon with hydrogen. What are those were used for?Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

Here, already fixing the engines. I remind you that these were the times of the First World War so this plane looks like it has already been shot.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Do you know what this guy is doing here? He is warming up an oil drum over a fire pit he has dug in the ground. That was the way to warm it up.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Ok and finally some shots from the air plane. This is a railway station on the day of the imperator Nickolas I’s arrival. Pretty crowded. Russian Airforce of 1915

And now some pilots and their planes.

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

Russian Airforce of 1915

And a crashed plane again.

Those were interesting times indeed – already had the planes and could climb into the air but had to warm the oil in the ground firepits and use horses and stamp their legs to prepare airfields..

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6 thoughts on “Russian Airforce of 1915”

  1. In case someone is interested, the original article states that this airfield is located in Krosno, which is a south-eastern Poland. This particular part of Poland was occupied by Austria-Hungary before the war, but was captured by Russians by September 1914. Less than half a year later (by May 1915) both Russian and Austrian forces were driven out of the city and Krosno once again was under Polish rule.

  2. The ballons were probably used for see the direction of the wind at higher altitudes than one you could detect on the ground. I’ve seen that being made before the launch of hot air baloons. I assume the same technique was used in the dawn of aviation.

  3. They filled the balloons up with hydrogen gas and released them. By timing how long it took for the balloons to disappear into the clouds, they could tell how high the clouds were and if it was safe to fly.

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