"Blue Cat" Flying Boat

This image shows one of the "Blue Cats" Cruz Catalina Flying Boats of the Floridian Independent Fleet's Air Arm in action during the suppression of the Cuban Uprising in 1899.

Upon Florida's seccession from the United States in 1887 following the disputed Presidential election, there was brief period of territory-wide anarchy. This came to an abrupt halt as the commanders of the former state militia took control of the cities and towns, imposing a harsh regime of law and order. Over time, these military groups formed themselves into formidable mercenary forces; notably the Floridian Independent Fleet and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

At first the authorities in Washington were keen to re-establish control over the rogue peninsula, but the mercenary groups soon became an indespensible (and plausibly-deniable) instrument of American foreign policy. Commisioned to deal with a rising tide of Bolshevism amongst the governments of Central and South America, the mercenary forces proved themselves utterly ruthless and determined.

Further images of this versatile and effective attack craft can be viewed here.