Imperial Airlines

Imperial Airlines started operations in June 1948 with a Curtiss C-46 after being formed in December 1947. The company was originally called Regina Cargo Airlines. During February 1953 the company was reorganized, and operations started with passenger services principally carrying servicemen on Civil Air Movements for the US Government, and also some charter work. During 1960 several more C-46s were acquired and a DC-4 leased. In June 1959 a two-year operating certificate was awarded by the CAB. In June 1960, the company was renamed Imperial Airlines and the first of three 049s was acquired in April of that year. The 049 was used on passenger charter and military contract work within the USA. In December 1960 and May 1961, two further 049s were lease-purchased and these continued to be used on US domestic charter flights. During a brief period in July 1961, Imperial operated charter flights over the North Atlantic with the 049s, and even flights from London (Heathrow) to Prestwick on charter work for BOAC. A few months later, in November 1961, the airline's operating license was withdrawn after the crash of N2737A on a military charter flight in the USA.

 Reg.  From To
2069 N86532 60 61
049 1964 N67953 60 61
049 1976 N2737A 61 61

Construction number/registration/type

c/n 1976 N2737A L-049

c/n 1964 N67953 L-049

May 61 - November 61

Leased from Miami Aircraft and Engine Sales on 2 May 1961. Made emergency landing at Prestwick, en route Gander - Copenhagen
11 July 61. Bought by Imperial Airlines 14 July 1961. Crashed 8 November 1961 at Byrd airport, Richmond, VA with heavy loss of life. 74 passengers and three of the 5 crew were killed.

The Connie here seen at London Gatwick in May 1961, Scott Henderson Collection.

February 60 - November 61

Regina Cargo Airlines, later Imperial Airlines leased this Connie from Miami Aircraft and Engine sales in February 1960. Out of service November 1961 after crash of c/n 1976.

Oakland 12 September 1960,  Clinton H. Groves Collection Collection.