12/29/1936: Uruguayan Aeronautical Company CAUSA is Founded

12/29/1936: Uruguayan Aeronautical Company CAUSA is Founded

DALLAS — Today, in 1936, the Compañía Aeronáutica Uruguaya S. A. (CAUSA), a private Uruguayan airline, was founded. It operated between 1938 and 1967, with its base of operations at Carrasco International Airport (MVD).

Uruguayan banker and writer Jules Supervielle and Colonel Tydeo Larre Borges formed CAUSA. The airline’s main objective was to establish operations on the profitable route between Montevideo and Buenos Aires. On March 12, 1938, CAUSA began its operations using two German Junkers Ju 52/3m seaplanes that were purchased new for US$150,000.

These seaplanes, the CX-ABA (C/N 5877) named “El Uruguayo” and the CX-ABB (C/N 5886) named “El Argentino,” were of excellent construction and mechanically reliable. Lufthansa (LH) and the Luftwaffe had previously used them as well as the Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War.

CAUSA faced competition from the Argentine airline Corporación Sudamericana de Servicios Aéreos, which also offered passenger service with seaplanes between Montevideo and Buenos Aires.

Lockheed L-749A Constellation of CAUSA Uruguay at Montevideo Carrasco in 1975. Photo: RuthASCC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons.

Post-war Aircraft, Operations

After World War II, CAUSA found itself in competition with the Argentine airline ALFA, which later became Aerolineas Argentinas. To stay competitive, CAUSA decided to purchase two modified Short Sunderland seaplanes. These seaplanes were very popular among passengers, prompting CAUSA to acquire a third Sunderland in 1946.

However, as the 1960s approached, seaplanes began to lose their popularity among the public. In May 1962, CAUSA decided to discontinue its seaplane services and change its business strategy. They focused on conventional aircraft operations as a replacement for seaplanes.

To implement this strategy, CAUSA purchased four Curtiss C-46 Commando aircraft: C-46F CX-AYR (c/n 22403), C-46A CX-AZS (c/n 30393) previously owned by Real Aerovias Brasil, C-46F CX-BAH (c/n 22531), and C-46F CX-BAM (c/n 22392).

Unfortunately, the service of the Curtiss aircraft with CAUSA was short-lived. By 1964, all of these aircraft were sold to ARCO Aerolineas Colonia. However, in 1962, CAUSA made another purchase decision and acquired three Lockheed Constellation aircraft of the L-749A-79-33 type from KLM. Two of the Constellations were delivered to CAUSA in 1962, and the third arrived in 1963.

The Lockheed Constellations remained in service until May 1967, when CAUSA ceased operations. Afterward, these aircraft were left abandoned, immobilized, and deteriorating at a corner of MVD, serving as a somber reminder of the passing years in the late 1960s and mid-1970s.

Featured Image: CAUSA Lockheed Constellation. Photo: FAU521, public domain

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