Sponsor Message:

Constellation Survivors

By Ralph Pettersen
September 29, 2003

Ralph Pettersen returns with his third article, an incredibly detailed and thorough history of Constellations complete with an unprecedented review of all of the surviving Constellations, including dozens of photos.

January 9, 2003 marked the sixtieth anniversary of the first flight of the Lockheed Constellation. On Saturday January 9, 1943 the Constellation prototype, NX25600 (c/n 1961), made a fifty-eight minute flight from Burbank, California to Muroc Field, California and an aeronautical classic was born. NX25600, painted in USAAF camouflage, was the first of 856 Constellations and Super Constellations built by the Lockheed Corporation. While no examples are in commercial or military service today, about fifty-five aircraft survive with four flying on a regular basis.
The USAAF originally ordered 260 C-69’s, the military version of the Constellation, but only fourteen entered service and these were quickly declared surplus and sold to the airlines in 1946 and 1947. At the end of World War II, Lockheed also had seven undelivered C-69’s in various states of production. These were quickly converted to civilian L049’s and sold to the airlines giving Lockheed a year head start on Douglas. A civilian type certificate for the Constellation was awarded on December 11, 1945 and commercial operations were inaugurated by Pan American on February 3, 1946 between New York and Bermuda. TWA followed three days later with Constellation service on their New York to Paris route.
Production continued until 1958 with larger and more capable versions being developed with the ultimate Constellation, the L1649A Starliner, entering service with TWA in May 1957. The final aircraft delivered, N6937C – an L1049H – went to Slick Airways on September 17, 1959.

Four major series of Connies were produced:
The C-69/L049 series Constellation - 88 aircraft delivered, including fourteen C-69s for the USAAF...

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Pima Air Museum's N90831 is the sole surviving C-69. Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Capital Airlines was a major operator of the L049. Photo © Mel Lawrence



The L649/L749 series Constellation - 145 aircraft delivered, including ten C-121A/Bs (USAF) and two WV-1s (US Navy)...
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Columbine I was used by General Eisenhower in Europe in 1951 and '52. Photo © Flemming K. Fogh
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

TWA had a large fleet of L749A Connies. Photo © Mel Lawrence



The L1049 series Super Constellation - 579 aircraft delivered, including 320 for the USAF (C-121, EC-121, and RC-121) and US Navy (R7V-1 and WV-2)...
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

This aircraft served with the Indian Air Force as BG-577 from '61 to '76. Photo © Mel Lawrence
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

The US Navy was a major Connie customer with both WV-2/EC-121 early warning and R7V-1 transport aircraft. Photo © Steve Williams



The L1649 series Starliner - 44 aircraft delivered...
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Air France was one of only three airlines to take delivery of the ultimate piston airliner from Lockheed. Photo © Mel Lawrence
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

In 2001, N974R took to the air after many years of storage at Sanford, Florida. Photo © Ralph Petterson



The advent of the jet airliner meant early retirement for many Constellations. By the mid-1960’s, most had been replaced and mass scrappings were underway in places like Kansas City, Missouri, Lancaster, California and Miami, Florida.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © George Gayuski
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


TWA made its last Constellation passenger flight from JFK, New York to St. Louis, Missouri in May 1967 using L749A N6020C.

Photo by J. Roger Bentley - N6020C at Washington National Airport a little more than a year before making TWA's last passenger Connie flight.

Eastern Airlines followed shortly after, in February 1968, when it retired its fleet on the famous Air Shuttle route. After retirement from mainline service, numerous aircraft were converted to freighters, some went to travel clubs and many went to second tier operators.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Mel Lawrence
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © David Schulman


Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ted Miley


By the early 1990’s only a few remained in commercial service flying freight for Dominican operators in and out of Miami, Florida. These aircraft were, for the most part, surplus military aircraft that had been bought cheap at Davis Monthan AFB.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Hans-Werner Klein
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Hans-Werner Klein


This also came to an end when the FAA prohibited operations into the United States by these operators in 1993 due to flight safety concerns. While the final Constellation flight is hopefully many years in the future, final military and commercial operations have been religiously recorded by Constellation enthusiasts...
· The final passenger service was flown by Aerovias Nacionales Quisqueyana on January 19, 1978 using two Constellations, L749A HI-207 and L049 HI-270. The flights were from Santo Domingo to San Juan and it is ironic to note that the last flight was made using the oldest Constellation type, an L049.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © William Hardie


· The final U.S. military operation was flown by NC-121K BuN 141292 on June 11, 1982 at NAS Key West, Florida. Two weeks later, on June 25, 1982 this aircraft was flown to the Florence Air and Missile Museum in Florence, South Carolina.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


· The final military operation was flown by Indian Air Force L1049G BG-579 on March 31, 1984. The Indian military was forced to retire its Constellations when Air India would no longer perform maintenance on them due to the lack of spare parts.

· The final commercial freight operation was flown in 1993. Dominican operators Aerochaga and AMSA were forced to suspend operations that year due to an FAA ban on Dominican registered propliners in the US.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Torsten Maiwald



About the time the Constellations were fading from commercial operation, they began appearing on the airshow circuit. While numerous two and four engine airliners had been restored by museums for static display, no one had ever restored a four-engine airliner to airworthiness for display on the airshow circuit. The first group to do so was Kansas City based Save-A-Connie, which rescued L1049H N6937C from the desert and flew her to Kansas City in July 1986. The group, consisting of many ex-TWA employees, overhauled the aircraft in 1987-1988 and she was formally dedicated on July 9, 1988. The group has continued restoration of the aircraft and today she is in pristine condition and flies regularly on the US airshow circuit.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


The second Constellation to join the airshow circuit was Vern Raburn’s “MATS Connie”, C121A N494TW. This aircraft is an ex-USAF VIP transport, which was converted to a sprayer in the early 1970’s. An interesting note about this aircraft is that she was owned by the actor John Travolta for a short time during the mid-1980’s. Vern purchased her in 1987 and restored her to flying condition. She made her debut at the 1992 Oshkosh airshow and thrilled the crowd by performing a close formation fly-by with Save-A-Connie’s L1049H. The crowd loved it but the FAA made sure it didn’t happen again! The aircraft is based out of the Constellation Group’s Avra Valley headquarters and tours the country from March through November.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Jérôme Krier
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


The third active Super Connie is the Constellation Historical Society’s (CHS) ex-C-121C Super Constellation, N73544, which is based at Camarillo, California. She was restored from 1992 to 1994 and made her first appearance at the NAS Point Mugu airshow in September 1994. Although grounded for a period of time, she is airworthy again and has made appearances at a number of west coast airshows in 2003. Enthusiasts in Europe can look forward to seeing her perform at European airshows beginning in 2004. The Swiss based Super Constellation Flyers Association (SCFA) has reached agreement with the CHS to lease the aircraft for four years and bring her to Europe. If everything goes as planned, after four years of lease operations, the SCFA will become the proud owner of this beautiful aircraft.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © AirNikon
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Nick Sharp


Australia’s Historical Aviation Restoration Society (HARS) probably gets the award for the messiest restoration effort. Their aircraft, ex-C-121C VH-EAG, had the distinction of being the last Constellation in storage at Davis Monthan AFB. The truth is that no scrap dealer wanted the airplane because the interior was covered with several inches of bird droppings. The Australians moved the aircraft across the road to the Pima Air and Space Museum and in April 1994, after eighteen months of work, flew her to Tucson International Airport for further restoration. Two years later on January 24, 1996 she departed Tucson on an epic journey to Sydney, Australia, where she arrived on February 3rd. The aircraft is an active participant on the Australian airshow circuit and is based in Sydney, Australia.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Craig Murray
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Craig Murray


While these four aircraft are the only ones flown regularly, during the past five years a number of Connies have been made airworthy and made at least one flight. For many years, ex-C-121A N749VR, sat forlornly on the Constellation Group’s ramp at Avra Valley. It had been purchased by Vern Rayburn in 1993, as a source of spares for the MATS Connie, and was ferried to Avra Valley in September 1994. She was sold to the Dutch Constellation Association in 1995, a group that planned on restoring it for a flight to The Netherlands.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © AirNikon
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ruud Leeuw

Nothing much happened with the restoration until the Dutch Aviodome Museum became involved in early 2001. This group joined forces with the Constellation Group’s mechanics and eighteen months later, in September 2002, the airplane was re-registered N749NL and successfully ferried to The Netherlands. While currently sporting an early 1950’s KLM colorscheme, she is grounded due to the lack of suitable Curtis electric propellers. The propellers used for the ferry flight are owned by the Constellation Group and were returned to Arizona shortly after completion of the flight. The museum, so far, has been unsuccessful in locating suitable replacements and is now exploring other options in its effort to return this airplane to the sky.
Another former USAF ex-C-121A, N9463 is probably the most famous of the “non-museum” survivors. It is owned by Harry Oliver and Mel Christler and was Dwight Eisenhower’s first presidential Constellation, “Columbine 2”. Used by Mel as a source of spares for his four Constellation sprayers, it was in derelict condition when he found out its “pedigree” in 1980. Mel joined forces with Harry in late 1989 and, using parts from sister ship C-121B N608AS, restored her to flying condition and flew her to a number of airshows in 1990 and 1991. After flying only once since 1991, it was made airworthy and flown to the Constellation Group’s headquarters at Avra Valley on May 4, 2003.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


Super Connie N105CF was last flown by Aerochaga in 1993 and stored at Santo Domingo from 1993 to June 2000, when the Swiss based Super Constellation Flyers Association (SCFA) purchased her. The aircraft was made airworthy and flown to Opa Locka, Florida in November 2000 with the intention of completing the restoration at the Constellation Group’s facility in Avra Valley, Arizona. After additional work at Opa Locka, the airplane completed the ferry flight to Arizona, arriving on January 7, 2001. The group’s intention was to complete the restoration in Arizona, obtain an FAA “standard” airworthiness certificate, and base the airplane in Europe where it would provide rides at airshows.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Joe Fernandez - Aviation Photography of Miami
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen

This was done, with great success, by the MATS Connie in 1998, and it seemed like a great idea at the time. Then September 11th happened, the FAA became much stricter about following the “letter of the law” and after the Dutch experience with N749NL it became obvious that the FAA would only grant N105CF an “experimental” certificate, which would not allow the carriage of passengers. After considerable resources had been expended, the Swiss group abandoned the effort in January 2003. In June 2003, the SCFA reached agreement with the Camarillo, California based Constellation Historical Society for the lease/purchase of their C-121C N73544. With this turn of events, the fate of N105CF is uncertain, at best.
Maurice Roundy has single handedly saved three L1649A Starliner Constellations from being scrapped. His Maine Coast Airways currently owns L1649A’s N7316C, N8083H, and N974R. While the first two have been safely stored adjacent to Maurice’s home at the Auburn-Lewiston Airport in Maine since the mid-1980’s, the third had been slowly deteriorating at the airport in Sanford, Florida. Parked at Sanford since arriving via an emergency landing in September 1988 very few people, other than Maurice, ever thought it would fly again. In early 2000 Maurice began restoring the airplane with the help of a handful of volunteers. Again, the skeptics underestimated Maurice but in October 2001, it made the short flight to Kermit Week’s Fantasy of Flight museum in Polk, Florida where it is on loan for five years.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


The restoration of old Connies in past few years has picked up considerable momentum. While Maurice Roundy is currently restoring his two Auburn, Maine based Starliners to airworthy status, a number of museums have begun restoration projects involving long neglected aircraft. The most exciting of these efforts is Maurice’s plan to get L1649A N7316C flying again on the airshow circuit. Maurice had hoped to get both 16C and N8083H flying but the plan now is to restore 83H for static display adjacent to his house at Auburn-Lewiston Airport.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


For almost thirty years, ex-Capitol Airways L1049E N1005C sat atop a restaurant in Penndel, Pennsylvania as a cocktail lounge. In 1996 the site was bought by Amoco Oil and the airplane donated to the Air Mobility Command Museum at Dover AFB in Delaware. In October 1997, the aircraft was moved from Pennsylvania to Dover AFB by road and reassembled in July 2003. The restoration should be completed by early 2005 and, when completed, she will be painted in USAF colors to represent a C-121C transport.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Andy Martin
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


The Brazilian Wings of a Dream Museum in Sao Carlos, Brazil recently rescued L049 N86533 from an uncertain future. For twenty-five years she had been on display at a park in Asuncion, Paraguay in deteriorating condition. The aircraft was disassembled and, after a thirty-day road trip, arrived in Sao Carlos on December 13, 2000. Now reassembled and back on her feet again, the museum plans on painting the aircraft in 1950’s era Panair do Brazil colors.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Paul Chandler
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Miguel Cano Alva


Possibly the most surprising news of the year was the impending restoration of L1049H HI-542CT, long abandoned at Aguadilla-Borinquen Airport, Puerto Rico after being damaged by a runaway DC-4 in February 1992. The aircraft has been moved from its long-time parking space in early 2003 and recent photos from Puerto Rico seem to indicate that its restoration has begun.
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Jose A. Rafols
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Jose A. Rafols


These are exciting times Constellations. With many projects underway, the emphasis has changed from scrapping aircraft to restoring them. While we will continue to lose an aircraft occasionally to the scrap man, many more are being saved by dedicated individuals and groups. My hat goes off to these people. Below is as nearly complete as possible a list of the current status of the remaining airframes. Some well-known aircraft, such as C-121B N608AS, which was recently scrapped, have been included to provide continuity. The information has been gathered from many sources including Propliner Magazine, Airliners Magazine, Air Classics and Peter Marson’s fine book, The Lockheed Constellation.
If, in viewing the following list, you find any errors, or if you would like to contribute additional information, or if you have photos of a Constellation survivor, please email the author.

L049/C-69 c/n 1970 N90831 – On display, Pima Air and Space Museum, Tucson, Arizona, early TWA colors. Only surviving C-69.

L049 c/n 2071 N86533 – Being restored, Brazilian Wings of a Dream Museum, São Carlos, Brazil. To be displayed in 1950’s Panair do Brazil colors.

L049 c/n 2072 N9412H – At Greenwood Lake Airport, West Milford, New Jersey.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


L049 c/n 2081 N2520B – Used as a library at a children’s park in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Previously painted in Pepsi color scheme, but currently in plain gray.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Andy Martin


L749 c/n 2503 F-ZVMV – Stored, Musee de l’Air storage area, Le Bourget Airport, France in good condition.

L749A c/n 2522 HI-332 – Impounded and parked at Aqua Jira, Columbia for drug smuggling in 1980. No recent sighting/unable to verify status.

L749A c/n 2553 N7777G (G-CONI) – On indoor display at the Science Museum, Wroughton, England, mid-1960’s TWA colors.

L749/C-121B c/n 2600 N608AS – Scrapped Jan. 11, 2002, Ryan Field, Tucson, Arizona. Supplied parts for the 1989-90 restoration of Columbine II (48-610/N9463).
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


L749A/C-121A c/n 2601 N494TW/48-609 – Flown regularly on the US airshow circuit with the Constellation Group in early 1950’s MATS (Military Air Transport Service) colors. Offered for sale in May 2000 for US$1.2M. Based at Avra Valley Airport, Marana, Arizona.

L749A/C121A c/n 2602 N9463/48-610 – Flown to Avra Valley Airport, Marana, Arizona in early May 2003 for maintenance. In "Columbine" colors.

L749A/C-121A c/n 2603 HI-393 – Derelict at Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic after supplying spares to keep N494TW flying. Airport authority plans on scrapping this and other derelict aircraft stored at the airport.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Javier F. Bobadilla - IBERIAN SPOTTERS


L749A/C-121A c/n 2604 N749NL – Restored at Avra Valley Airport, Marana, Arizona by the Dutch Aviodome Museum in 2001/2002 and flown to The Netherlands in September 2002. Painted in late 1940’s KLM colors. Stored at Schiphol Airport awaiting replacement propellers.

L749A/C-121A c/n 2605 N422NA/48-613 – On display, Planes of Fame Museum, Valle, Arizona, Bataan colors.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Europix


L749A/C-121A c/n 2606 48-614 – On display, Pima Air and Space Museum, Tucson, Arizona, Columbine I markings.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © AirNikon


L749A/WV-1 c/n 2613 N1206 – Stored, Salina, KS after unsuccessful attempt to fly aircraft to Sherman, Texas in November 1992. One of only two PO-1Ws/WV-1s produced for the US Navy.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


L749A c/n 2647 N6011C – Aircraft scrapped at Chacalluta Airport, Arica, Chile in Jul 1970. Fuselage and engines photographed in January 1996 at a scrap yard in Arica. No recent sighting/unable to verify status.

L749A c/n 2675 CN-CCN – Parked at Anfa Airport, Casablanca in 2003 in full, but faded, Royal Air Maroc colors.

L1049 c/n 4017 N6903C – Fuselage used for many years as an evacuation trainer at Oakland, California. At the Oakland Airport dump in 1999. No recent sighting/unable to verify status.

L1049B/C-121G c/n 4137 N105CF – Parked, Avra Valley Airport, Marana, Arizona. Restoration by the Super Constellation Flyers Association susppended in January 2003 due to their inability to obtain a “standard” airworthiness certificate from the FAA for the aircraft.

L1049B/C-121J c/n 4144 N4247K – Impounded and parked adjacent to the domestic terminal at Manila Airport, Philippines in deteriorating condition.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Heinz Rentmeister


L1049B/C-121J c/n 4145 BuN 131644 – Derelict, Williams Field, McMurdo Sound, Antarctica after landing accident October 1970. Covered by several feet of ice and snow.

L1049B/VC-12E c/n 4151 53-7885 – On display at the USAF Museum, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio in Columbine III markings.

L1049F/EC-121S c/n 4174 54-155 – On display Parade Ground Airpark, Lackland AFB, Texas.

L1049F/C-121C c/n 4175 N75344 – Flown regularly on the US west coast airshow circuit with the Constellation Historical Society (CHS). Based at Camarillo, California and advertised for sale in January 2002 for $1,000,000. Two offers of $600,000 declined. In July 2003 the CHS entered into an agreement to lease the aircraft to the Swiss based Super Constellation Flyers Association (SCFA) and jointly operate it on the European airshow circuit for the next four years. After that time, the SCFA hopes to purchase the aircraft.

L1049F/C-121C c/n 4176 VH-EAG – Flown regularly in Qantas colors (less titles) on Australian airshow circuit by the Australian based Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS). Based at Sydney, Australia.

L1049F/C-121C c/n 4196 N1104W – Stored, Dulles International Airport, Virginia by the Smithsonian Museum’s Air and Space Museum. Future in doubt as museum has no plans to exhibit aircraft in new museum, to open December 2003.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Ralph M. Pettersen


L1049F/C-121C c/n 4199 54-180 – On display, Transport Aircraft Museum, Charleston AFB, South Carolina, marked as 40153.

L1049F/C-121C c/n 4202 HI-548CT – Scrapped, 1999, at Santo Domingo-Las Americas Airport. (Cockpit section and other parts preserved by the Super Constellation Flyers Association in Switzerland.)

L1049A/EC-121T c/n 4335 N4257L/52-3417 – Used as instructional airframe at the Helena College of Technology, Helena, Montana. Engines run and systems checked early 2002.

L1049A/EC-121T c/n 4336 N4257U/52-3418 – On display, Combat Air Museum, Topeka, Kansas.
L1049A/EC-121T c/n 4343 52-3425 – On display, Peterson Air and Space Museum, Peterson AFB, Colorado.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Shaun Lehman


L1049A/EC-121K c/n 4347 BuN 137890 – On display, “Connie Park” near the 552 ACW Wing complex at Tinker AFB, Oklahoma, marked as 53-0552A.

L1049A/EC-121H c/n 4350 N51005/53-535 – Derelict, Minden Air Corporation scrapyard, Tucson, Arizona as 0-30535. Owned by the Super Constellation Flyers Association and used as a spares airplane for N105CF (c/n 4137).

L1049A/EC-121T c/n 4363 N548GF/53-548 – Stored, Camarillo, California. Was flown on the western US airshow circuit in the late 1990’s but grounded in 2001 due to wing corrosion. Owner died in 2001 and aircraft offered for sale in March 2002 for $595,000.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Andy Martin


L1049A/EC-121T c/n 4369 53-554 – On display, Pima Air and Space Museum, Tucson, Arizona.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © AirNikon


L1049A/EC-121D c/n 4370 53-555 – On display, USAF Museum, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Thomas P. McManus


L1049A/NC-121K c/n 4416 BuN 141292 – Flew last US military Constellation mission June 11, 1982. Scrapped at Florence Air and Missile Museum, Florence, South Carolina in 1999 after “donating” engines and landing gear for the restoration of the AMC Museum’s L1049E N1005C (c/n 4557).

L1049A/EC-121K c/n 4421 BuN 141297 – On display, Warner Robins Museum of Aviation, Warner Robins AFB, Georgia, USAF markings.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Axel Juengerich


L1049A/EC-121K c/n 4433 BuN 141309 – On display, McClellan Aviation Museum, Sacramento, California, USAF markings as 03-0552.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © AirNikon


L1049A/EC-121K c/n 4435 BuN 141311 – On display, Octave Chanute Aerospace Museum, Rantoul, Illinois.

L1049A/EC-121K c/n 4495 BuN 143221 – On display, National Museum of Naval Aviation, Pensacola, Florida.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Den Pascoe


L1049G c/n 4519 F-BRAD – Under restoration, Chateau Bougon Airport, Nantes, France. Designated a “historical monument” by the French government in 2001.

L1049G c/n 4544 CF-RNR – Moved adjacent to Pearson International Airport, Toronto, Canada for use as a cocktail lounge. Closed, for sale in 2001.

L1049E c/n 4557 N1005C – After many years as a cocktail lounge in Penndel, Pennsylvania, aircraft disassembled and moved to Air Mobility Command Museum at Dover AFB, Delaware in October 1997 for restoration. Reassembled in July 2003 and restoration as a military C-121C transport scheduled to be completed eighteen after.

L1049G c/n 4604 D-ALIN – On display, Hermeskeil Museum, Mosel, Germany, Lufthansa colors.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Edwin Donders


L1049G c/n 4614 IN-315 – Preserved, Indian Naval Aviation Museum, Hansa Naval Station, Goa, India.

L1049G c/n 4616 CS-TLA/5N-83H – Abandoned in Faro, Portugal in 1969 after participating in the Biafran Airlift. Restored as a restaurant in 1981. Burned out by October 1999. Remains moved to a scrapyard in 2000.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Luis Rosa


L1049G c/n 4626 F-BHBG – Adjacent to the Le Moulin Disco at Vannes, France. Only the center vertical fin was in place in 2003. Over the years, with little or no maintenance, the outer fins fell off due to severe corrosion.

L1049G c/n 4671 F-BHML – On display as D-ALEM in Lufthansa colors at FJ Strauss Intl Airport, Munich, Germany. Passenger interior intact and used to showcase historical films of Lufthansa Constellation operations.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Flo Weiss


L1049G c/n 4686 BG-583 – Stored, Agra-Lohegaon AFB, Pune, India for the Indian Air Force Museum.

L1049G c/n 4687 BG-579 – Stored, Agra-Lohegaon AFB, Pune, India. Aircraft made the last Indian Air Force flight on March 31, 1984.

L1049H c/n 4813 N6931C – Nose section possibly at Musee de l’Air at LeBourget Airport, France. Was being restored for museum in 1985. Status unknown.

L1049H c/n 4825 HI-542CT – Abandoned at Aguadilla-Borinquen Airport, Puerto Rico after ground collision with a DC-4 in 1992. Restoration for static display began in early 2003.

L1049H c/n 4830 N6937CLast Constellation delivered. Flown regularly on US airshow circuit by the Airline History Museum (formally Save-A-Connie) in TWA colors. Based Kansas City Downtown Airport, Missouri.

L1049H c/n 4831 CF-NAL – Abandoned at São Tomé since 1970 in derelict condition.

L1049H c/n 4832 CF-NAM – Abandoned at São Tomé since 1970 in derelict condition.

L1049H c/n 4846 N468C – Crash landing in Belize on May 19, 1976 with #1 and #2 engines shut down and left gear retracted. Scrapped and fuselage moved to Blue Creek, Belize. Used for storage.

L1649A c/n 1013 N7311C – Damaged during forced landing at Colchane, Chile on March 26, 1969 while on a smuggling mission. Confirmed sighting of derelict aircraft in the late 1990’s. No recent sighting/current status unknown.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Mel Lawrence


L1649A c/n 1018 N7316C – Under restoration at Auburn-Lewiston Airport, Maine parked adjacent to Maurice Roundy’s house. Maurice plans to restore and fly aircraft on US airshow circuit.

L1649A c/n 1038 N8083H – Under restoration at Auburn-Lewiston Airport, Maine parked adjacent to Maurice Roundy’s house. Maurice plans to restore aircraft for static display at airport.

L1649A c/n 1040 N974R – On display, Fantasy of Flight Museum, Polk, Florida where it was flown by it owner, Maurice Roundy, on October 19, 2001, after many years of being stored at Sanford, Florida.

L1649A c/n 1042 ZS-DVJ – On display, South African Airlines Museum, Jan Smuts International Airport, Johannesburg, South Africa, Trek Airways colors.
Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Bill Hough


Click here to see more great shots of the Connie!

Written by
Ralph Pettersen

Ralph Pettersen, a true lover of old piston engined airliners, has been photographing and writing about them since the mid-1960's. In addition to being a regular contributor to Propliner Magazine, his other passion is flying his 1966 Beechcraft Debonair which he has flow throughout the US. The article would not have been possible without the assistance of many friends and fellow enthusiasts. The author made extensive use of internet sources, his collection of Propliner Magazine, various other magazines and articles, and Peter J. Marson’s 1982 book, The Lockheed Constellation Series. Any corrections or additions would be most appreciated.

4 User Comments:
Username: Teahan [User Info]
Posted 2003-10-08 14:01:04 and read 32768 times.

Excellent article, many thanks.

Username: Fanofjets [User Info]
Posted 2003-10-10 04:04:38 and read 32768 times.

I loved your article and illustrations. What a fine tribute to a beautiful airliner! I have seen only two of these birds; after having read this article, I want to see more!

Username: Skymonster [User Info]
Posted 2003-10-11 19:53:07 and read 32768 times.

Absolutely fascinating. Thanks Mr Connieman!

Andy

Username: GDB [User Info]
Posted 2003-11-09 16:38:16 and read 32768 times.

Superb article, great pics, terrific details.

Post your comments on this article:
Username: 


No username? Sign up now!
  • Article related posts only. Other topics here.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Back all your opinions with facts.
  • Do not post copyright protected material
  • Check your spelling!             Detailed Rules...
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Body:

Read how to include links, pictures and smilies! (opens in new window)

Please check your spelling before
pressing the Post button once.

Discuss other aviation issues in our active Discussion forums!

Publish your article on Airliners.net!    
    
Recommend this article
to a friend!
    
    Read more articles!