Anniversary of Graf Zeppelin’s First Transatlantic Flight

On this day in 1928, LZ-127 Graf Zeppelin arrived at Lakehurst after a 111 hour, 44 minute flight across the Atlantic from Friedrichshafen.

Hugo Eckener was in command of the 40-man crew and the 20 passengers included Charles Rosendahl and Lady Grace Drummond-Hay.

Graf Zeppelin first atlantic flight map

The ship’s first transatlantic crossing almost ended in disaster when a fin was damaged passing through a squall line on October 13, but it was repaired in-flight by a four man team including Knut Eckener, Albert Sammt, and Ludwig Knorr.

LZ-127 fin damage and repair

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Dagmara Lizlovs
The repair of the damaged fin from the squall line on October 13 was a very harrowing moment. Dr. Eckener wrote this in his book “My Zeppelins” (Im Zeppelin über Länder und Meere) – “The men who had volunteered to climb around in the framework of the stabilizing fin, heaving violently up and down, and blasted by the stormy slipstream, deserved the highest praise . . . I must admit that I felt some parental pride that my son had been one of these volunteers, and not the last one either.” However, along with this parental pride there was also… Read more »
Milan Zivancevic

Yes, and 85 years ago today, on 15 october 1929, at 8:30 PM, the ‘Balkan flight’ began.

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