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Author Topic: Silver Queen airship(s)  (Read 739 times)

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Offline Nemo

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Re: Silver Queen airship(s)
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2017, 08:42:02 »
No problem!  The only slight caveat I have is that I have subsequently found newspaper references from 11 February 1914 that the Parseval airship (HMA4) was reconstructed and enlarged - and "its gas envelope painted silver to make its colour blend with the sky"'.  These reports do not mention that the other (few) airships were similarly treated and hence we could assume that, for a time, she would've been the only silver airship to be seen...

Offline Trikeman

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Re: Silver Queen airship(s)
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2017, 23:26:07 »
Thanks for all that information Nemo - you have proved to me beyond all doubt that 'Silver Queen' was a generic name. That'll teach me to do a bit more research next time!
Smoke me a kipper, I'll be back for breakfast

Offline Nemo

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Silver Queen airship(s)
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2017, 12:20:56 »
In the ‘Godmersham – Airship field’ thread, Trikeman suggested that “Silver Queen” was a nickname for the airship(s) based there and Paolo responded with a 1930 quote from the Folkestone Herald indicating that “Silver Queen” was a generic name.  I agree with Paolo.  The thread also contains an image of uncertain date – the 1st attachment below.

Use of “Silver Queen” as a generic name (for non-rigid airships) is supported by these two quotes:
1.  ‘We were evidently being watched by local people who did not realize our danger, for one resident telephoned our commanding officer to ask if his "blimps" or "silver queens" had nothing better to do than stunt over Brighton for the benefit of the public!’  https://www.flightglobal.com/FlightPDFArchive/1960/1960%20-%200795.PDF – the airships were SSZs (Submarine Scout Zeros), the type based at Capel/Folkestone and Godmersham.

2.  ‘The production of the rigid airship during the war was always surrounded with a cloak of impenetrable mystery.  Few people, except those employed on their construction or who happened to live in the immediate vicinity of where they were built, even knew of their existence, and such ignorance prevailed concerning airships of every description that the man in the street hailed a small non-rigid as "the British Zeppelin" or admired the appearance of R 23 as "the Silver Queen."’
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/762/762-h/762-h.htm#chap03 – this source also refers to aluminium dope and varnish.

The first definitively dated use of “Silver Queen” that I can find is by the Sunderland Daily Echo of 22 April 1914:  ‘The Navy airship Silver Queen yesterday flew from Farnborough to Dover and back – 200 miles – in seven hours’.  This was the occasion of a visit to Dover by King George V and Queen Alexandra on their way to France and the Dover Express of 24 April states that it was ‘Naval Airship No.4’ – the 2nd attachment below (although the paper erroneously adds 2 and 2 together and elsewhere names No. 4 as “Delta”, a different ship).

Naval airship no.4 was Parseval Luftshiff 18, delivered from Germany to the Royal Navy in 1913 after her maiden flight on 23 April 1913.  She was initially referred to as ‘The Parseval’, eg. http://www.earlyaeroplanes.com/archive/airships01/1913.Parseval.18_HMA.No4.jpg, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Parseval_airships#/media/File:Parseval_PL_18_1913-05-03.jpg (note the army personnel) and the 3rd attachment below (postcard written 24 July 1913; note the naval personnel).

From some point she became referred to as “[The]Silver Queen”, eg. on the John Drew postcards at https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Aviation_in_Britain_Before_the_First_World_War;_Silver_Queen_RAE-O639.jpg and the 4th and 5th attachments below (note that the former is a repeat of the J-P Lauwers image from the Wiki link above and that the latter has an aeroplane in flight), and on the 6th attachment – a Frith postcard.

The “Silver Queen” name may be becoming more generic by the time John Lavery painted an airship at Wormwood Scrubs in 1915:  https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Silver_Queen_by_John_Lavery.jpg;  the IWM tags this ‘The Sliver Queen… one of the original blimps’, whereas Wiki comments ‘This appears to be an SS-class blimp’.  Finally, if one takes this image at face value, Vickers Parseval airship HMA6 of 1916 was also referred to as “The Silver Queen”:  http://www.earlyaeroplanes.com/archive/airships01/1916.Parseval.airship.HMA.No.6.jpg.

 

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