Thom wroteColon Wikipedia wroteColonAutogyro
C.30 landing on the Spanish seaplane tender Dédalo in 1934
Some interesting history I gleaned from the Spanish Wikipedia entry that wasn't available in English, I speak some Spanish so here is the story of the Dédalo (http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/D%C3%A9dal ... droaviones
The Dedalo was originally one of a number of German Merchant Marine ships given to Spain by the Wiemar Republic to make up for Spanish shipping that was destroyed by indiscriminate submarine warfare during WWI. The Dedalo (or as she was known until 1921, España nº 6 (Spain Number 6)) was received by Spain on October 23, 1918. It was returned to Trans-Atlantic commercial activity with the Compañía Trasatlántica (Transatlantic Company) until 1920 when the Bubonic plague broke out on board. Her civilian life ended at the end of September 1921 when she was turned over to the Spanish Fleet.
The Dédalo (Spanish for Daedalus: after the Athenian inventor who built the labyrinth of Minos; to escape the labyrinth he fashioned wings for himself and his son Icarus) was the original Spanish seaplane and balloon carrier. Her conversion cost 8 Million pesetas. She carried 2 Italian dirigibles that were semirigid and 1,500 m³ in size(1 active, 1 Reserve), 2 AP Ballons of 1,200 m³ that could be tied to the port bow. The ship had a a lattice tower on its bow to dock with airships. It also carried bottles of hydrogen gas and a small factory to produce Hydrogen to sufficiently secure the supply of the balloons.
She could carry twelve planes on deck, and twenty more, with wings folded, in the inside hangar. She carried the following during her service life: Felixstowe F.3, Savoia S.16 y S.16 bis, Macchi M.18, and Supermarine Scarab. Seaplanes would not take off from the meager aft deck. They were lowered by crane into the water, and after completion of their mission, after landing in the water they would be lifted by the same crane back into the ship.
In 1925, she provided great service during the war in Morocco at the Battle of Alhucecemas. It's aircraft played a role, on day 21 of the battle by dropping more than 175 bombs on enemy positions.
Juan de la Cierva and Codorniu, with his famous invention of the autogyro, made a perfect and precise landing with a model C.30 registered G-ACIO from this vessel at anchor near the port of Valencia on a marked area of the deck. Half an hour later, after a short run of 24 meters off the ground. It was the first time ever that a vessel with rotor blades took off on a ship. She sat out the Spanish Civil War in the port of Cartagena (Spain) to be ultimately discharged on March 1, 1940. After being towed to Valencia she was scrapped.
By the way, the writing on the image is pretty interesting:
To the Commander (Commandante), officials and your crew of "the Dedalo,"
a souvenir of the first take off and landing on an anchored boat.
J. de la Cierva