Sunday, March 29, 2015

to Morocco with Air Atlas, circa 1951

Air Atlas was created on 9 October 1946 by the Résident général de France au Maroc (Resident General of France in Morocco). It began by operating two lines in November 1946 with ten 14-passenger Junkers Ju52's and five small 8-passenger Nord NC-702 Martinets. Following financial difficulties, Air France helped out and took a share of the capital. In 1951 this airline served travelers to France, as well as Morocco's interior lines, namely Casablanca-Marrakech-Agadir / Casablanca-Rabat-Oujda-Meknes / Rabat-Casablanca-Tangier. The acquisition of six Douglas DC-3's with 23 seats began in 1948. Three (some sources say two) Bloch (SE).161 Languedoc quadrimotors rented from Air France in 1952 rounded out the fleet.

In 1953 Air Atlas merged with Air Maroc and formed the Compagnie Chérifienne de Transports Aériens or CCTA. In 1957, the CCTA became Royal Air Maroc; the Morcoccan state held 55% of the capital, Air France 30%, Société Air Transport 10% and Aviaco (Spain) 5%.

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