CubaCubana The Early Years

Jozef Mols looks back at Cubana’s formative years and the growth of its aircraft fleet and route network.

One of two Bristol Britannias operated by Cubana.
Malcolm Nason

PART 1

Cuban aviation started in 1919 when the first aircraft, owned by the Cuban Government and flown by pilot Augustin Parlá, made the first aerial photos of Havana. That same year, the Compañía Aérea Cubana (CAC) was founded by millionaire Anibal J de Mesa, who made Parlá the airline’s general manager. CAC had a fleet of six Farman Goliath aircraft, which arrived in Cuba by ship from France. It o_ ered flights between Havana and Santiago de Cuba with stops in Santa Clara, Cienguegos and Camaguey.

Become a Premium Member to Read More

This is a premium article and requires an active Key.Aero subscription to view. You can also access it if you’re subscribed to one of our Key Publishing magazines.

I’m an existing member, sign me in!

I don’t have a subscription…

Why not join our community of aviation enthusiasts? Pick one of our introductory offers and access a wealth of world-class aviation content.