Try to find the spot where the photographer was standing.
This Fokker D.VII is exactly recognisable as the complete registration is painted on the fuselage side.
It says : Fok D.VII (O.A.W.)
This gives away that this is a licence built Fokker D.VII by the O.A.W Ostdeutsche Albatros Werke. This machine was from a series of 350 machines with numbers D 8300/18 - D 8649/18. This whole batch was delivered according to the armistice treaty to the Allied forces. It is known that more than 100 Fokker D.VII machines were taken to the USA, where apparently during the time no genuine complete sample has been preserved.
By the way this machine never saw any war service.
The train used to transport the "circus" can be seen in the rear.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/varese2002 In fact, three of the D.VIIs brought to the US after the war survive, but only one is still in this country. The Smithsonian has an original, delivered to them by the Army in 1920. It is the well known U10 which landed behind Allied lines in error in 1918. Two other former USAAS Fokkers survived here for many years. One went to the Canada Aviation Museum, Ontario in 1971 and the other to Militaire Luchtvaart Museum in Soesterberg, Netherlands in 1981.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected] Thanks for your information. Regarding the D.VII now in the National Military Museum in Soesterberg (the Militaire Luchtvaart Museum 'fused' in that museum some years ago) I found the following information:
- this D.VII was found in the Wings and Wheels museum in Orlando in 1981 by a Dutch researcher
- this were the remains of D.VII 2528/18 which later got the US registration N4729V sometime after it was transported to the US
- the machine was then in a 'dusty' state, maybe after years of exhibition flying or maybe used as a film prop
- the machine was bought in this state by the Fokker factory in Amsterdam, who completely restarted the machine
- it was painted in colours of the Dutch LVA Luchtvaart Afdeling wearing the registration 266 and large orange circles, during and slightly after WW1 the national markings on Dutch aircraft
No idea how much was 'restored' at least the painting is spurious.
Source: Nico Geldhof. 2008. De Fokker D.VII. Geromy Publishers. ISBN 9789080498136
This aircraft was one of many "enemy" aircraft which were sent touring the USA in 1919-20 with what was called Victory Loan Flying Circus tour and this one was used by the Mid West flight.
There is a photo showing this aircraft with a Lt Frank Estill, possibly its regular pilot.
The US civil registration N4729V is a post 1948 registration.
Between 1927 - 1940 (at least) the US FAA never used four digits plus suffix, ie NC1V to NC999V were used but nothing from NC1000V and up.
This is also what the US FAA has listed presently for N4729V, which ties in rather badly with what Nico Geldhof stated in 2008.