Curtiss H-4

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Curtiss H-4
Role Flying Boat
Manufacturer Curtiss
Primary user U.S.A.
Number built 62 [1][2]
Engine 2×90hp Curtiss OX or
2×100hp Anzani or
2×160hp Curtiss

Two Curtis H-4 America flying boats were delivered from America to the U.K. in November 1914. Those planes may have originally been named the Curtiss H-1s, and they were the prototypes for the rest of the line. Orders for twelve more followed in early 1915. All of the British H-4's were refitted with larger engines that the original 100hp Curtiss engines. Later in 1915 another fifty were ordered and they were refitted with 100hp Anzani engines. The H-4s were always underpowered and they were mostly used for training duties, though some were used for patrol flights. [3]

With the arrival of the larger Curtiss H-12 flying boats, the H-4s picked up the name Small America and the larger ones were the Large America. [4]

Those with the original Curtiss engines became known as the America 950 type and they carried 12×9.1 kg (20 lb) or 2×45 kg (100 lb) bombs; those with the 160hp Curtiss engines were known as the America Improved and carried up to 4×45 kg (100 lb) bombs. The type was declared obsolete in August 1918 and only three survived the war.[5]

For more information, see Wikipedia:Curtiss H-4.


  1. Owers, p.36.
  2. Angelucci, p.97.
  3. Munson, p.163
  4. Owers, p.1.
  5. Nowarra, p.146.
  • Enzo Angelucci, ed. The Rand McNally Encyclopedia of Military Aircraft, 1914-1980. New York: The Military Press, 1983 edition. ISBN 0-517-41021-4.
  • Kenneth Munson, Bombers: Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft, 1914-1919. New York: The MacMillan Company, 1968, Blandford Press Ltd. ISBN 978-0753721711
  • Heinz J. Nowarra, Bruce Robertson, and Peter G. Cooksley. Marine Aircraft of the 1914-1918 War. Letchworth, Herts, England: Harleyford Publications Limited, 1966. ISBN 0900435070
  • C.A. Owers, Windsock Datafile 125: Curtiss H.12. Great Britain: Albatros Publications Ltd., 2007. ISBN 1-902207-94-7