Friday, November 25, 2011

A.H. Baron Banfield

Here she is (see yesterday's post).
The A.H. Baron Banfield, formerly the Unterweser 36.

(photo by Nereo C.)

Freiherr Gottfried von Banfield (6 February 1890 in Castelnuovo, Austro-Hungary – 23 September 1986 in Trieste) was the most successful Austro-Hungarian naval aeroplane pilot in the First World War. He was known as the 'Eagle of Trieste' and was the last person in history to wear the Military Order of Maria Theresa. He may have been the only flying ace who flew a flying boat to five or more victories.
After the First World War, the city of Trieste was annexed by Italy, and Gottfried was for a time imprisoned by the occupation police. In 1920 he emigrated to England and became a British subject. He married the Contessa Maria Tripcovich of Trieste (d. 1976). They settled in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where their son Raphael Douglas, known to the world as the composer Raffaello de Banfield Tripcovich, was born in 1922. In 1926, Gottfried took Italian nationality and returned to Trieste to become Director of the Diodato Tripcovich and Co. Trieste Shipping-Company, which he took over from his father-in-law. Trieste Company ships then sailed under the Italian flag. Banfield became a celebrity of the city, usually called 'Our Baron', 'Il nostro Barone'. Serving as the Honorary Consul of France at Trieste, he was decorated with the Legion d'Honneur in 1977. Banfield died in Trieste in 1986 at the age of 96. (wiki)


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