Pieter van der Zwaart was born in Amstelveen, a village near by Amsterdam, about 1 mile from Schiphol, now known as the Amsterdam Airport. At that time, aviation in the Netherlands was still recovering from the devastation of World War II. As a very young boy, Pieter's family collected airplane cards for two albums “Vliegende Vleugels” (Flying Wings) written by the famous Dutch aviation author C. van Steenderen and issued by Theodorus Niemeyer, producer of coffee and tea.

Pieter's father was a great admirer of Dr. Albert Plesman, a Dutch aviation pioneer and founder of KLM, the oldest airline in the world still operating under its original name. Together they made several visits to Schiphol and as a young boy he saw the KLM-fleet developing from Douglas DC-4s to DC-6s to DC-7s to Lockheed “Constellations” and later on to the beginning of the jet-age with Douglas DC-8s and DC-9s. As a working student, with Avis® Rent A Car at Schiphol, he even witnessed the first arrival of the Boeing 747 at Schiphol.

During his working career and growing a family, for many years there was no time for his aviation interests. But during the last two decades, he revived his interest in Aviation, especially by collecting card albums in that theme from all over the world. On the same terms he also collects card albums on cars. At that time, Pieter also revived his musical interests. After playing trumpet in his youth, he started studying the bass tuba and now plays in several orchestras and occasional groups at the top amateur level in the Netherlands. Pieter has a collection of about 400 card albums from all over the world, evenly distributed about cars and planes. From all the continents only Asian albums are still missing. And after a few decades of collecting he still isn't sure whether the albums are the best things in collecting or the contacts one makes during trading and exchanging information.

Some of his interests in aviation are shared with his son, and together they visit aviation museums in and around the Netherlands. His son is a very enthusiastic advanced flight simulator player on his PC and Pieter hopes to be tutored in flying by him soon.

After receiving his degree in Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics, Pieter had a career in Math Education and Curriculum Development. After his retirement, Pieter is still involved in the development of math tests for secondary education.


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