Russo-Baltic Wagon Works

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An ad for vehicles by this company

Automobile firm made also Biplanes, Monoplanes, Biplane Seaplanes. [Note, if a floatplane is different than a seaplane, we need to add it.]

Spring 1912: Sikorsky joins along with team of six and previous designs; they made 20+ new aircraft designs, notably "the Grand" in 1913 and "Ilya Mourometz" in 1914. Used [Argus motors]] among others. A succession of Ilya Murometzes after that were built to serve the Russian Army in World War I. Sikorsky left for France in spring 1917, escaping Bolshevik Revolution.

Naming, lexicography, archives, and sources

Variously written in Cyrillic Wikipediae: Руса-Балт, Русско-Балтийский вагонный завод, in Latvian: Krievu-Baltijas vagonu rūpnīca

(some garbling here as econterms has rephrased earlier descriptions; check sources someday and simplify this discussion below)

Sikorsky (1967) refers to it as both the Russian Baltic Railroad Car Factory and as the Russian Baltic Company, and in one place, states the complete name of the organization as the Society of Russia Baltic Railroad Car Factories. It does not provide the firm's Russian name

Finne et al refers to the firm as R-BVZ and provides the transliteration used here in an editor's note, where it makes the direct translation, Russo-Baltic Wagon Company. Finne reprints a 1913 Russian advertisement, courtesy of the U.S. National Air and Space Museum, and a direct transliteration of the Russian characters made for this page (by CKR) reads: Russko-Baltiiskago Vagonnago Zavoda (RBVZ)

Gunston uses RBVZ.

Google's U.S. Internet browser retrieves results that use various combinations of Russo- or Russian-Baltic Railroad Car or Wagon Factory, Company, or Works.

Company headquartered Riga, Russia; aviation branch factory established St. Petersburg. We could code this place as being in Latvia, which was part of Russia at the time but perhaps worth analyzing separately.

There are many pictures of this company's vehicles and some of its documents, in WikimediaCommons here: [1]


  • Igor I. Sikorsky, The Story of the Winged-S, New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1967 ed. pp 62-145
  • K.N. Finne, Igor Sikorsky, the Russian Years; translated and adapted by Von Hardesty; Carl J. Bobrow and Von Hardesty, eds., Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1987. pages 7-55, 159-161
  • Gunston p249
  • Gunston, 2005, p385
  • Smithsonian Directory

Names Ruskii Baltiskii Vagon Zavod, Russo-Baltic Wagon Works, Sikorsky, Russo-Baltiiskiy Vagonnyy Zavod
Country Russia, RU
City Riga; St. Petersburg
Started aero 1912, first aviation factory.
Ended aero 1917
Key people M. V. Shidlowskiy, Igor Ivanovich Sikorsky
Wikidata id