Copyright© 2000, Douglas Alberg.   Photographed August, 2000


Grave for Crew of Soviet Airship CCCP-B6

This airship was intended for exploration of the Arctic in 1938, though no record of this flight occuring can be found.

Location: The Novo-Devichy (Nowodjewchij) cemetery, Moscow.

Soviet Airship History

The Graf Zeppelin's around the world tour in 1929 stopped in Russia and apparently inspired the Soviet government to develop their own airships. Here is a stamp showing the Graf Zeppelin which calls for the 5-year plan to be completed in four years.

5 Year Plan

The "Red Airship Program" was led by the Italian Umberto Nobile during the years 1932-1936. Dr. J. Clarke writes: ...the Italians assisted Moscow with military technology, specifically in the construction of dirigibles. This program, however, suffered several unfortunate setbacks. One ship they were helping the Soviets to build was destroyed in an accident in 1933. The next year, engineer Felice Trojani helped construct another dirigible, but it and a third ship, along with the wooden hangar housing them, were destroyed by fire. A new dirigible, substantially a copy of the Italian airship Italia, was then constructed according to the plans of the famous arctic explorer, Umberto Nobile.

Many Soviet stamps depict airships, though it is difficult to know which were real and which were concepts.

Dirigible Dirigible

This site has several other interesting stamps depicting Russian airships.

This 1931 poster exhorts Let's Build the Dirigible Fleet in Lenin's name.

Lenin poster