Douglas C-110

The Douglas C-110 was the designation given to three DC-5 airliners after they were impressed into USAAF service during 1944. The DC-5 had been developed to complement the successful DC-3, operating on feeder routes, and in its normal configuration carried sixteen passengers. During 1939 Douglas received orders for 21 DC-5s from commercial airlines and for seven military R3Ds for the US Navy, but a combination of the gathering war clouds and technical problems with the DC-5 meant that all but one of the civil orders was cancelled.

The one remaining order was from KLM, and was for four aircraft. KLM continued to operate in the East and West Indies after the German invasion of Holland, and in 1940 the four DC-5s were split between those areas, with two going to Curacao and two to Batavia. In the following year the two aircraft from the West Indies also moved to Batavia, just in time to be caught up in the Japanese invasion of the Dutch East Indies.

One of these aircraft was captured by the Japanese after the fall of Batavia, and was pressed into Japanese Army service as a radio-navigation trainer. The remaing three aircraft escaped to Australia, where from 1942 to 1944 they were operated for the Allied Directorate for Air Transport by Australian National Airways and No.21 Squadron, RAAF.

They were finally impressed into USAAF service during 1944, and designated as C-110-DEs. They were used by the 374th Troop Carrier Group of the Fifth Air Force until the end of the war, operating from New Guinea, Biak and Luzon.

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (13 November 2008), Douglas C-110 ,

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