This book presents the evolution and development of perhaps the most iconic German fighter of WWI—the Fokker Dr. 1 triplane or “Dreidecker.” The Dr. 1 was born from experiments in cantilever monoplanes and the excellent combat record of the Sopwith triplane, which appeared at the western front at the end of 1916. Only 320 Fokker Dr.1s were built, yet their imprint on aviation history was and is far reaching and enduring—perhaps due to those who flew them. Baron Manfred von Richthofen and his brother Lothar, as well as Werner Voss, Ernst Udet, and many others, all flew the triplane, helping burnish their image in collective memory. This book highlights the design and construction of the legendary Dr. 1, as well as showcasing many flying replicas and where they can be found. Also included are selected museums from around the world where Dr. 1s can currently be seen.
Mark Wilkins is a historian, author, and lecturer specializing in aviation and maritime history. He is currently a curator at the Calvert Marine Museum, has been director and curator for two museums, and has worked for the Smithsonian Institution. Mark is a contributor to Aviation History and Air & Space magazines and is the historical consultant for a new documentary on WWI aviation.