On 2 July 1900 the people of Friedrichshafen, Germany, witnessed a momentous occasion - the first flight of LZ 1, Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin's first airship. Although deemed a failure, a succession of better craft (LZ2 to 10) enabled the Zeppelin to expand into the consumer market of airship travel, whilst also providing military craft for the German Army and Navy. The years of the Great War saw the Zeppelins undertake strategic bombing missions against Great Britain. This title covers the post-war fate of the Zeppelins, including the crash of the Hindenburg, and their use by the Luftwaffe at the beginning of World War II.
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Table of Contents
Introduction · Forging the weapon: 1900–14 · Army and Navy Zeppelins at war: 1914–18 · Progress and failure: 1918–40 · Conclusion · Colour plate commentary