of VH-USU Fokker F.VIIa/3m "Southern Cross"
Flyer' says the inscription under 'Southern Cross' in this photo from
the R.N. Smith collection.
Fageol Motors was founded in 1916 and was
primarily a builder of buses. However, in 1928 they
also produced a Fageol Flyer truck, which
doubtless the Fokker is advertising. I suspect this photo
was possibly taken in Oakland or San Francisco
circa 1928 prior to its epic trans-Pacific flight, since
it is carrying its US regisration 1985
on the tail.
is "Southern Cross" arriving at Brisbane after its record breaking
flight from San Francisco
September 1928. Note plain number 1985 on rudder.
This, course, should have been
NC1985. In those days the "NC" was often omitted. Sometimes
just the "C: was prefixed. Note
hoards of enthusiasts!
Above is a rare shot from the Fairfax archives (via the NLA) showing
Southeern Cross as G-AUSU.
Date and venue unknown , but probably
around 1930 since it became VH- early in 1931.
a nice shot of "Southern Cross" taking off. This photograph was
taken whilst the aircraft was
on a tour of New Zealand in 1933.
Note revised exhaust systems on the engines compared to the
shot of "1985" above. Also, the
cabin windows have been revised. Clearly the aircraft had under-
gone extensive refurbishment following
its trans-Pacific odyssey.
and below, two more photographs of VH-USU on its 1933 New Zealand tour..
Above, "Southern Cross" is seen
banking over Mangere, New Zealand, in what is
now the locale
of Auckland International Airport. This
shot and the top two historic images are from the archives
of the Airways Museum
and Civil Aviation Historical Society (of Australia).
This photograph is from the
Paul Tolenaars collection and shows VH-USU landing at Auckland.
The original of this photo was signed by the wireless operator John
S.W. Stannage and co-pilot
aviation personality P.G. Taylor.
Too bad Smithy didn't also sign it, although even
as is, it is an historic
Finally, another nice photograph from the R.N.
Smith collection, showing VH-USU with a smaller
rendition of the
rego. (Love the period after the -USU. fairly common in
those days). Could this
possibly have been taken in
the US before the aircraft set off, just after it had been re-registered
from 1985 to VH-USU?