Sunday, March 27, 2011

Cameroon Airlines: Systemwide Network, Summer 1976

One of the earliest and most marked secessions from the Air Afrique consortium was the Republic of Cameroon, which withdrew in 1971 to found its own flag carrier, Cameroon Airlines.

This overbright document, colored and typefaced like a Chinese menu, exemplifies the very singular presence of the airline's quasi-Maoist, neo-hippie branding, from its Star-and-crane logo to its jungle-chic Paris ticket office. from the incredible archives of Timetable Images.

A dense domestic network, was concentrated on the English-speaking southwest and zig-zagged northward to terminate at N'Djamena. Long-range ventures out of Douala reached Marseille, Paris-Orly, Geneva and Rome, likely with B707s-- the pride of fleet B747s, rarely native to tropical Africa, did not arrive until 1982. No international or intercontinental flights out of Yaoundé (Nsimalen International Airport now enjoys service from Air France, Brussels Airlines, and Swissair, at least).

Like many Air Afrique replacements, Cameroon Airlines did not last, and the country is left with fledgling, marginal re-iterations: Camair Co is scheduled to begin flying tomorrow to--where else? Paris. Also here.

This, like several other recent installments, is from the incredible archives of Timetable Images, specifically the collection of Björn Larsson-- reprinted with appreciation.

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