Crash site Holl-Holl, French Somaliland
Airline Ethiopian Government
Aircraft Farman F.192 (gift from France)
Route Addis Ababa – Djibouti
Crew 2 – both survived
Passengers 0


The crash

During the years 1931-1933 the Ethiopian Government opened an air mail route from Addis Ababa to Djibouti in French Somaliland.
The 6th flight took off from the Jan Meda airfield, Addis Ababa on 13 February 1932 at 14:30. Strong headwind and sand storm made the flight difficult. At 17:50 sand in the engine caused the engine to stop and the plane crashed 9 km from Holl-Holl. Both the crew members were injured as they were thrown out of the plane. An hour after midnight a rescue team found the wreck, and the crew and the mail were brought into Djibouti.
Nierinck mention that the aircraft was a Farman 190 reg.no. F-AJRV, but this aircraft crashed in November 1930.


The mail

The need for airmail from Ethiopia in the early 1930es was very limited. Most of the air mail during 1932-1934 was sponsored by Adrian Zervos, the Ethiopian Director of Posts in Addis Ababa who prepared the covers with his own name and address.
The mail from the crashed aircraft was recovered and transported to Djibouiti where it was postmarked on the back with the postmark “COTE FSE DES SOMALIS * DJIBOUTI * 14 FEV 32”. From Djibouti the mail for Europe was forwarded by boat.
I have recorded two covers addressed to Sweden – both sent to the well-known Swedish philatelist Thor Allard, Linköping.


Examples of mail

19320213 001a 19320213 001b
Registered cover from Ethiopia with postmark ADDIS-ABEBA 3 II 32 and addressed to Sweden. On front is a Swedish arrival postmark LINKÖPING  1  6  32 and on the back an arrival postmark of DJIBOUTI  14 FEV 32.
Thiesen Collection.