Dutch Aviation History 1900-1913/Next

Poster of the Flying school Molenheide at Gilze-Rijen in the south of the NetherlandsJan Olieslagers from Antwerp in his flying machine

Heinrich van der Burg, posing proudly for his selfbuild aircraft which is very simular to an aircraft of Bleriot. Van den Berg was the first Dutchman who built an aircraft that actually flew

Marinus van Meel taking off with his 'brik', which was the fist aircraft of the LVA, the Dutch Airforce

First flight over Holland

Almost a month before Bleriot completed his first historic flight over the English Chanel, the first flight over Holland took place.

On occasion of the 40-year celebration of the founding of his sugarfactory, the Dutch businessman S.C.J. Heerma van Voss sr wanted to do something special for his staff and personel.

The idea was to organise a flyingdemonstration on june 27 1909.


That day, the French Count de Lambert, a student of Wilbur Wright, would demonstrate his flyingmagic in a Wright doubledecker aircraft.

Tenthousend of people were gathered to see this event, however bad weather prevented Lambert from taking off.
In the evening weather was looking better and finally, at 20:23 the plane departed from the special lancingrails and was airborne for three and a halve minutes.

In the same year 1909 the Verwey & Lugard carcompany located in The Hague, bought a field at Soesterberg and Ede to ground the two first airfields in the Netherlands.

On the 'Doesburger heide' near Ede, Jan Hilgers (who was trained in France but had no brevet) was the first Dutchman who made a flight over his own country.

He flew a Bleriot XI, the same machine in which the French aviation pioneer Bleriot crossed the English Chanel.

Postcard remembering Clement van Maasdijk, who was the first aviationcasualty in the Netherlands

Clement van Maasdijk, another Dutch aviator, was the second Dutchman to make a flight over Holland on a flying demonstration in Heerenveen in the north of the Netherlands.

Van Maasdijk however was the first "victim" of aviation. While performing a flying demonstration at Warnsborn near Arnhem, he died instantly when his Somer doubledecker crashed and fell down from 50 meters.

In 1910-1911 flyingdemonstartions were very popular: the aviators were the new heroes. Esspecially Jan Olieslagers fromAntwerp (the brave Belgium aviator) was famous.

But Dutch aviators of this first hour were also succesfull.

Adriaan Mulder was the first Dutchman with a n official flyinglicence.