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British Overseas Airways Corporation

British Overseas Airways Corporation was the British state-owned airline created in 1939 by the merger of Imperial Airways and British Airways Ltd. It continued operating overseas services throughout World War II. After the passing of the Civil Aviation Act 1946, European and South American services passed to two further state-owned airlines, British European Airways and British South American Airways. BOAC absorbed BSAA in 1949, but BEA continued to operate British domestic and European routes for the next quarter century. A 1971 Act of Parliament merged BOAC and BEA, effective 31 March 1974, forming today's British Airways. On 24 November 1939, BOAC was created by Act of Parliament to become the British state airline, formed from the merger of Imperial Airways and British Airways Ltd; the companies had been operating together since war was declared on 3 September 1939, when their operations were evacuated from the London area to Bristol. On 1 April 1940, BOAC started operations as a single company.

Following the Fall of France, BOAC aircraft kept wartime Britain connected with its colonies and the allied world under enemy fire, with desperate shortages of long-range aircraft. During the war, the airline was sometimes loosely referred to as'British Airways', aircraft and equipment were marked with combinations of that title and/or the Speedbird symbol and/or the Union Flag. BOAC inherited Imperial Airways' flying boat services to British colonies in Africa and Asia, but with the wartime loss of the route over Italy and France to Cairo these were replaced by the expatriate'Horseshoe Route', with Cairo as a hub, Sydney and Durban as termini. Linking Britain to the Horseshoe Route taxed the resources of BOAC. Although Spain denied access, Portugal welcomed BOAC's civilian aircraft at Lisbon. However, the Mediterranean route from Lisbon or Gibraltar to Egypt via Malta risked enemy attack, so the long West Africa route had to be employed by landplane to Khartoum on the Horseshoe Route; the Empire routes had contained landplane sectors, but the Armstrong Whitworth Ensign and de Havilland Albatross ordered to replace the Handley Page HP.42'Heracles' biplanes had proved disappointing, leaving the Short Empire flying boats as the backbone of the wartime fleet..

The Empire flying-boats were at their limit on the 1,900-mile Lisbon-Bathurst sector. Refuelling at Las Palmas in the Canary Islands was permitted by Spain for some Empire flying-boat flights in 1940 and 1941. In 1941 longer range Consolidated Catalinas, Boeing 314As were introduced to guarantee non-stop Lisbon to Bathurst sectors. BOAC's flying-boat base for Britain was shifted from Southampton to Poole, but many flights used Foynes in Éire, reached by shuttle flight from Whitchurch. Use of Foynes reduced the chance of enemy interception or friendly fire incidents over the English Channel. BOAC had large bases at Durban, Alexandria and a pilots' school at Soroti, Uganda. Experimental flights had been made across the North Atlantic pre-war by Imperial Airways Empire flying-boats with improved fuel capacity, some using in flight refuelling, culminating in a series of mail/courier flights made by BOAC's Clare and Clyde to La Guardia in camouflage during the Battle of Britain; these were BOAC's first New York services.

In 1941, BOAC was tasked with operating a'Return Ferry Service' from Prestwick to Montreal to reposition ferry pilots who had flown American-built bombers from Canada, they were provided with RAF Consolidated Liberators with a basic passenger conversion. This was the first sustained North Atlantic landplane service. By September 1944 BOAC had made 1,000 transatlantic crossings. In late 1942, the new hard-surface airport at Lisbon permitted the use of civil registered Liberators to North and West Africa and Egypt. Arguably, BOAC's most famous wartime route was the'Ball-bearing Run' from Leuchars to Stockholm in neutral Sweden. Flown with Lockheed 14s and Lockheed Hudson transports, the unsuitable Armstrong Whitworth Whitley "civilianised" bombers were used between 9 August and 24 October 1942; the much faster civilian registered de Havilland Mosquitoes were introduced by BOAC in 1943. The significance of the ball-bearings is debatable, but these night flights were an important diplomatic gesture of support for neutral Sweden which had two DC-3s shot down on its own service to Britain.

Other types used to Sweden included Lockheed Lodestars, Consolidated Liberators, the sole Curtiss CW-20 which BOAC had purchased. Between 1939 and 1945 6,000 passengers were transported by BOAC between Great Britain. At the end of the war, BOAC's fleet consisted of Lockheed Lodestars, lend-lease Douglas DC-3s, converted Sunderlands, the first Avro Lancastrians, Avro Yorks, Handley Page Haltons; the Short Empire, Short S.26 and Boeing 314A flying boats, plus the AW Ensigns, were due to be withdrawn. The Corporation's aircraft and personnel were scattered around the world, it took a decade to reorganise it into an efficient unit at Heathrow. In 1943, the Brabazon Committee had laid down a set of civil aircraft transport types for the British aircraft industry to produce, but these were to be several

Priscilla Rattazzi

Priscilla Rattazzi is an Italian-born photographer based in New York City who has worked as a magazine photographer and has authored several photography books. Priscilla Rattazzi was born in Rome in 1956, the youngest child of Susanna Agnelli and Urbano dei conti Rattazzi, she is the niece of Gianni Agnelli, chairman of Fiat. At the age of 16, she went to Wales as a student at Atlantic College, subsequently went to the United States, where she studied photography at Sarah Lawrence College, graduating in 1977, she has remained in New York City since her student days. As a model she was featured in Richard Avedon's "Avedon: Photographs 1947-1977" along with models Dovima, Dorian Leigh, Suzy Parker, she was an apprentice to Japanese fashion photographer Hiro. Her work has been featured in magazines including Good Housekeeping, Seventeen, New York Magazine and Italian Vogue. Rattazzi has been married three times, first to Alex Ponti to German investment banker Claus Moehlmann, to Chris Whittle, an entrepreneur, the founder and CEO of Edison Schools.

She is the mother of three children. She is the president of the US Foundation for Atlantic College. Priscilla's first book was printed in 1982. Entitled Una Famiglia, it consists of old family pictures of various relatives. Best Friends was Priscilla's second book, it featured an introduction by Gianni Agnelli. The book is composed of portraits of dogs and their owners including Glenn Close, Mary Wells, Diane Von Furstenberg; as a result of the book's success Priscilla was featured in Time's People section. Children features over 100 photographs of childhood and was published by Rizzoli in 1992. Many of the photographs include images of Maxi; the text was written by her sister, a child therapist. Georgica Pond was published by Callaway Editions in September 2000, it focused on the area in East Hampton, New York, where she and her husband Chris Whittle own an estate called Briar Patch. A portion of the proceeds from sales of Georgica Pond were donated to the South Fork-Shelter Island chapter of the Nature Conservancy.

Priscilla Rattazzi at HuffingtonPost.com Collection of Articles on Priscilla Rattazzi

Robert Morris Yardley

Robert Morris Yardley was a Republican member of the U. S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania. Robert M. Yardley was born in Yardley, Pennsylvania, he attended public and private schools in Yardley and Doylestown, Pennsylvania. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1872 and commenced practice in Doylestown, he served as district attorney of Bucks County, Pennsylvania from 1880 to 1884. He was a delegate to the 1884 Republican National Convention. Yardley was elected as a Republican to the Fiftieth and Fifty-first Congresses, he served as chairman of the United States House Committee on Expenditures in the Department of War during the Fifty-first Congress. He declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1890, he resumed the practice of law in Bucks County. He served as a member of the Doylestown School Board and as the director of several financial and public service corporations, he died in Doylestown, aged 52, is buried in Doylestown Cemetery. United States Congress. "Robert Morris Yardley".

Biographical Directory of the United States Congress