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A real collecting jewel was the first CSA pilot emblem of 1936. A golden falcon holding a wreath of silver lime leaves inside a blue field with an aircraft and the characters CSA inside.   Those of us who are lucky and can find and see such a marvel in any collection, the best case being when on the reverse side we can find the identification number of the pilot. We may remember the first CSA pilots - Karel Brabec, Josef Sedlář, Tomáš Galinovský and others who were ready to devote their capabilities and sometimes also their lives.

The increasing prosperity of airlines gave them more means for promotion. Aboard the planes we can note now even stewardesses and also new uniforms with badges of flying personnel that became quite current, etc. We can find there the answer to the question when collecting started.

After World War II finished civil air transport went through a major expansion.  Together with big national airlines smaller charter airlines appear and contribute to the interest for aviation badges. Technical progress influenced the production of badges and brings new technologies and materials. The producers started to use an alloy of silver, copper and zinc, electro-plating or gilding was also successful. We should not forget traditional materials like cloth with silver and gold embroideries.   Flying and ground personnel use them.

There are hundreds of collectors interested in badges and wings of airlines usually united in clubs. The interest is mostly about pilot and steward wings, cloth and metals badges for caps, hats, and lapel and fidelity badges. Names like Dick Koran, Charles F. Dolan, Ken Taylor, Hector Cabezas, Peter Zsille and Igor Krivocs are well known. Almost 50 collectors are in the Czech Republic and some of them are members of the Aviation Fan Club, e.g. Radek Palička who is specializing in pilot wings. We can see lapel badges in Victor Skalický´s and, Václav Poledne´s collections. The other club members ( Jan Bolardt, Jaroslav Farka) are forming sets from different airlines. These collections are including lapel and pilot badges of CSA and CLS of the 30´s of last century, badges of non-existing airlines - Slick Airways, Mandated Airlines, Suidwes Lugdiens, Det Danske Luftfartselskab, Malayan Airways. And we cannot forget the other very interesting examples of ground and flying personnel from KLM, Swissair, Delta Air Lines, Lufthansa, Canadian Airlines, Malév, and Hawaiian Air.

With this hobby you can get new interesting information and knowledge about air transport history, geography and the creation and use of badges and badges.

Luboš Ševčík in Memoriam

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