Enter Howard Hughes

Подпись:Подпись:Enter Howard Hughes

After Charles Lindbergh, and sharing fame with Amelia Earhart, Howard Hughes was America’s most famous avia­tor personality in the 1930s. He was admired by the public, respected by politicians who were aware of the power of his wealth, and recognized by the aviation community for his achievements. His wealth had been inherited from his parents who had died in the early 1920s, and at the age of 18 he began to expand the family business, the Hughes Tool Company, which held close to a monopoly of oil drilling bits.

Tlie Phenomenon

Taking to the business world like a duck to water—one com­mentator said that he ran his entire operation “out of his hip pocket for nearly 40 years”—he worked hard and played hard. He made films, including such epics as Scarface, Hell’s Angels, and The Outlaw. He romanced movie stars and flew airplanes. Everything he did was at the highest level of attain­ment, and this included his flying activities. Having won the Sportsman’s Trophy in 1934, he founded the Hughes Air­craft Company and built—and flew—a racing airplane, the H-l, and beat the world’s landplane speed record in 1935. The following year, in a Northrop Gamma, he broke the transcontinental speed record, and in 1937 broke it again, in his H-l. In this latter case, he flew at an altitude of 14,000 feet, using oxygen, and received the Harmon Trophy. In July 1938, in a Lockheed 14, he flew around the world in less than four days, averaging 202 mph. He had made meticulous preparations, and demonstrated systems of radio communica­tion, weather reporting, and navigation that were in advance of their time. The aircraft was known as The Flying Labora­tory,’ and for this flight, he received the Collier Trophy from President Roosevelt himself.

Into the Airline Fray

Howard came into the airline industry, therefore, with impressive credentials. By 1937, T. W.A. had passed out of the control by the Pennsylvania Railroad and North American Aviation (by the conditions of the 1934 Air Mail legislation) and was owned by Yellow Cabs’ John Hertz and Lehman Brothers, the investment bankers. T. W.A. President, Jack Frye, did not apparently like the control and approached Hughes with a view to starting another airline, which Hughes would finance and Frye would manage. Howard had another idea. In April 1939 he bought 25% of T. W.A. stock and by 1940 had increased this to a dominating 78%. He took over a great airline and set about the task of making it even better.

Enter Howard Hughes

This picture epitomizes the tremendous impetus given to the United States airline industry during the latter 1930s. The busy scene can be contrasted with that of what was then a modern airport in the late 1920s (page 19), only a decade earlier. The DC-3 was truly the first transport airplane that could be called a modern airliner; and but for T. W.A. it might never have happened.

Into the 1970s

New Brooms

The final exodus of Howard Hughes from T. W.A. occurred in 1966 (see pg 73). The big lenders, Equitable Life and Metropolitan Life, now held the pursestrings, taking effect from 1 January 1961, when the voting trust controlled the directions of invest­ment. The crisis was overcome. Ernest Breech, formerly with the Ford Motor Com­pany, took over as chairman on 27 April 1961, Charles Tillinghast having replaced Warren Lee Pierson as president on 17 April. They made a top-level team, respected in Wall Street as well as in Washington. The Lockheed L-1011 program got under way, and service began in 1972. The fleet consisted of 19 Boeing 747s, 104 Boeing 707s, 72 Boeing 727s, 25 Convair 880s, and 19 Douglas DC-9s. The total of 239 air­liners comprised a formidable armada.


Back in 1967, T. W.A. had purchased the Hilton Hotel chain, matching Pan Ameri­can’s move in buying Intercontinental Hotels. Now, “having lost sight of their objec­tives, they redoubled their efforts.” On 12 October 1978, the shareholders approved the organization of the Trans World Corporation, as a holding company for the air­line; the Canteen Company (an on-board catering service, acquired on 10 August 1973); and Century 21 (areal estate organization). A week later, thirteen more aircraft were ordered, including three Boeing 747SPs. On 9 June 1979, this latter aircraft was able to offer nonstop service from New York to Cairo; but this was after, on 2 March 1975, T. W.A. had agreed to a route exchange with Pan American, in which T. W.A. suspended service on the trans-Pacific route, and abandoned service at Bangkok, Bombay, and Frankfurt. The SPs never earned their keep. (See pages 84-85)

Post-Deregulation Oligopoly

The Airline Deregulation Act of 24 October 1978, had been expected to launch new initiatives, mainly with lower fares, for the benefit of the travelling public. About 150 companies applied for certificates from the Department of Transportation; only about a third of these ever started service; and a mere handful lasted more than a year or two. Meanwhile, the big airlines became more concentrated that ever before. After a decade of deregulation, a higher percentage of U. S. air traffic was in the hands of fewer air­lines than when when the industry was regulated by the Civil Aeronautics Board. Meanwhile, TWA tightened its belt. The early 1980s witnessed a period of Survival of the Fittest, as the competition was frequently almost self-destructive. T. W.A. survived, but at a cost. On 1 September 1983, all salaried personnel and management accepted a 10% pay cut, and on 30 November ALPA, the Air Line Pilots Association — nor­mally involved in seeking pay increases — took a similar reduction.


On 1 February 1984, Trans World Airlines once again became a separate corpora­tion, when it was broken clear from the parent company, which had been established on 12 October 1978 —just in time for Airline Deregulation (see above). Other units of the Trans World Corporation were profitable, unaffected by the changing regula­tory scene. But T. W.A., out of whose heritage the conglomerate had sprung, now “suffered from lagging sales, high debt load, and high operating costs.” The omens in the mid-1980s were not good.

LaMott T Cohu After Jack Frye resigned in February 1947, after a disagreement with Howard Hughes, Cohu became president.

During that period, Hughes and the Tool Company controlled T. W. A. affairs. Cohu resigned on 1 June 1948.

Warren Lee Pierson had been chairman and managing director of T. W. A. Internat­ional in April 1947, and came into promi­nence again when he became acting president on 9 January 1958, before Charles Thomas took over (see below).

Carter Burgess became president of T. W.A. on 23 January 1956, after Ralph Damon died on 4 January 1956 (see page 61). Damon had been a good partner for Hughes, but Burgess never even met his chief He lasted only until the end of the year.

Charles Thomas took over the presidency on 15 July 1958, after a hiatus during which T W. A. had been a ship without a sail. He resigned on 27 July 1960, providing the reason for Hughes’s ouster by the voting trust (see

Into the 1970sInto the 1970sInto the 1970sInto the 1970spage 73).

Into the 1970s

Charles Tillinghast became president of
Trans World Airlines on 17 April 1961, and
was to guide its fortunes for the next two
decades. He was at the helm when the
Trans World Corporation was formed on
12 October 1978.

Ernest Breech was the experienced business
leader, formerly chairman of the Ford Motor
Company, who had taken over the front
office of T. W.A. on 27 April 1961. He and
Tillinghast kept the airline on course.

Подпись: The New Tycoon

Into the 1970s

Nostalgic Comfort

That an airline with such a history of pioneering and achieve­ment as T. W.A. to have fallen upon hard times was cause for sadness. Adding up the figures over the course of half a cen­tury, not a single penny of accumulated profits could be iden­tified in the true sense of the term. Yet the airline had sponsored new generations of aircraft (of which the entire industry benefitted). Perhaps another fascinating connection with technical progress is to trace T. W.A.’s record of its con­nection with the motion picture industry.


Not long after T. W.A.’s ancestor, Transcontinental Air Transport (T. A.T.) started coast – to-coast service in July 1929 (see page 24), an announcement in the showbiz publi­cation Billboard of 19 October stated “Last week the T. A.T. ship leaving Port Columbus, on its westward hop to Waynoka, carried projection equipment, a program of Uni­versal Pictures, and an operator. The show was given during the flight to Waynoka and again on the second hop of the trip between Clovis and Los Angeles.” The projector used 16mm film and was set up on a board across the arms of two seats in the back row of the Ford Tri-Motor. The Duograph projec­tor, the lightest on the market, and housed in aluminum, was “of the hand-crank style, altho future installations will prob­ably be motor driven.”

The article speculated that this experiment would become a regular feature, but more than 30 years were to pass before the amenity was adopted by the airlines, and T. A.T. s successor, T. W.A., was the prime innovator.

In-Flight Movies

With the wide-bodied aircraft providing more headroom than in the piston-engined aircraft, the airlines had, in the early 1960s, experimented with showing motion pictures, mainly to relieve boredom on long transcontinental and trans-ocean flights. Trans-Atlantic passengers were treated to various types of screen and different viewpoints. Once the idea was promoted, every self-respecting major airline had to have them. Trans World Airlines introduced the first successful permanent system, on 19 July 1961. The movie was By Love Possessed, starring Lana Turner.

Carl Icahn

Like many a self-made man, Carl Icahn did not have wealthy parents. But he had the Midas Touch. He began on Wall Street in 1961, and founded Icahn & Company in 1968 with his own savings and some borrowed capital. His seat on the New York Stock Exchange was worth $150,000. By the mid-1980s, this had increased by 1,000 percent to $150 million. In 1985 he became interested in the airline industry and the opportunities offered by the liberal climate of airline deregulation.

First Overtures

On 9 May 1985, Carl Icahn filed a registration statement with the S. E.C. (Security Exchange Commission) to state that he had accumulated 6,745,000 shares, or 20.5%, of T. W.A. common stock, a process that he had begun earlier in March. A week later, this percentage had increased to 23%, drawing a comment from T. W.A. that this “transfer of control was uninvited and undesirable.” The next day, on 15 May, T. W.A. filed suit in the New York District Court, alleging that Icahn was in violation of the federal securities laws. The day after that, the airline filed a petition with the Department of Trans­portation to investigate the fitness aspects of the take-over bid, questioning Icahn’s managerial skills and technical abil­ities, regulation compliances, capital resources, and the lack of an operational plan.

Carl’s response, on 20 May, was an unsolicited proposal to T. W.A. shareholders of $18.00 per share, and T. W.A. coun­tered on 23 May with a request to the D. O.T. for emergency action, and also sought support in the corridors of political power on Capital Hill. The battle for control heated up. On 28 May the T. W.A. board recommended the pursuance of a better offer, possibly an employee buyout; but lost an appeal for restraint in the New York U. S. District Court. The Circuit Court of the County of St. Louis then issued a restraining order, prohibiting Icahn from acquiring additional shares.

Challenge from Lorenzo

On 13 June, a new player entered the skirmish for control of T. W.A., whose employees and management were now mere bystanders. Frank Lorenzo, whose Texas Air Corporation controlled Continental Airlines and New York Air, announced that he had won unanimous approval of a “definite merger agreement, providing for T. W.A. to become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Texas Air.” The offer was $19.00 in cash, plus 14-1/2% cumulative non-convertible preferred stock. On 25

June, Richard D. Pearson succeeded C. E.Meyer as airline president and C. E.O. He was to play a small part in persuad­ing the directors to make up their minds.

Carl Icahn Wins

On 5 August 1985, Icahn renewed his efforts, offering $19.50 cash, plus $4.50 of a 14.5% stock issue. On 13 August, Lorenzo raised his offer to $26.00 per share. But on 7 September he agreed to withdraw, in exchange for surrender­ing the Texas Air Corporation’s option on 6.4 million T. W.A. shares for $43 million. This was somewhat reminiscent of Lorenzo’s coup in collecting a similar profit when wrestling with Pan American to take over National Airlines.

On 14 June a Boeing 727 was hijacked in North Africa and the aircraft was not returned until 16 August. This was not a way to greet the new owner, who settled into his new occupation, and went through the necessary legal processes to pave the way for a merger agreement between Icahn & Company and Trans World Airlines, consummated on 26 September 1986. He had already made a good move. On 27 February of that year, he purchased Ozark Holdings, Inc., the parent company of St. Louis-based Ozark Air Lines, for $224 million. The story of this Local Service airline, and its valu­able regional route network and fleet, is told in the next six pages of this book

DC-3 Replacement

Post-war Problems

When the Second World War ended, the leading airlines rushed to put into service the new longer-ranged airliners that had been stimulated by technical advances during the war, as well as by the commercial pre-war design innovations that had been frustrated by wartime needs. T. W.A.’s Stratoliners were recalled from the military, and the C-69 Constellations and C-54 Skymasters were quickly refurbished with comfortable seating layouts. The emphasis was on the main inter-city routes; but the networks dated back to the 1930s, and with the “grandfather” route certificates in 1938, the airlines had sought, and the C. A.B. had granted, full service con­tracts to serve almost every city in the U. S.A. that was big enough to have an airport.

The problem was that many of the cities—and there were dozens of these—were too small to generate enough passengers, mail, or freight to justify service by such mainliners as the Con­stellation. Other cities were able to generate the traffic, but did not have the airfields to cope with the four-engined types. Also the airlines themselves chose to deploy their best equipment on the prestige routes, which generated the highest revenues. And so the veteran Douglas DC-3, obtain­able as conversions from military C-47s, C-53s, and other DC-3 variants, and which could land or take off almost anywhere, was in great demand to back up their newer brethren in the fleet.

Life in the Old Dog

The old Douglas DC-3 “Gooney Bird” was the obvious choice, as there were thousands of them. T. W.A. alone had 96 altogether—a large fleet during that period. Under the C. A.B. man­date, and like the other trunk airlines, it had to serve the smaller points, or lose its certificate for the whole route. Exemptions were sometimes granted, but every’ one had to be argued sep­arately, in an often protracted series of meetings in Washington. Later, during the 1950s, the Local Service airlines were established, and these provided the answer to the problem for sev­eral decades, relieving the trunk airlines from the obligation of providing “whistle stops” on prestigious point-to-point services.

But this took time, and this is why T. W.A. continued to keep the old DC-3s in service. Bill Halliday recalls that in 1947 “T. W.A. was flying so many DC-3s that as we approached Amar­illo to turn westward to Albuquerque (at night) we could see the flight ahead of us headed west and after we had completed our turn, we could look back and see the flight behind us.”

DC-3 Replacement

While Douglas, Lockheed, and Boeing were concerned with providing the front-line fleets, it was left to other manufacturers to come up with a formula for a modem airliner to replace the DC-3s which, even if they were not too old, were regarded by air travelers as old-fashioned and obsolescent. Postwar airliners needed, at the very least, a pressurized cabin, tricycle landing gear, on-board amenities such as ample luggage and coat space, good lavatories, and above all, faster speed. Two manufacturers came to the fore to meet this requirement: Martin, with its Model 202, and Convair, with its Model 240.

At the Martin plant in Baltimore, Allan Roshkind and his team started work on the Martin 202 (at first called the Mercury) immediately after Japan surrendered. But this 36-seat design was unpressurized, and its first customer, American Airlines, changed its mind and ordered Convair-Liners instead. Nevertheless, by the end of 1945, Martin had orders for 155 aircraft and the 202 made its first flight on 22 November 1946, four months ahead of the Convair-Liner. United had ordered a pressurized version, the Model 303, but this was cancelled.

DC-3 Replacement

This Martin 404, Skyliner Louisville, displays its registration number unusually, reading downwards on

the vertical stabilizer.

DC-3 Replacement

The Martin 202A went into service on 1 September 1950, to relieve the DC-3s on T. W.A. ’s shorter routes.
It carried 36 passengers, had a З-man crew, and cruised at 220 mph. Its built-in boarding stairs, includ-
ing a ventral access at the rear, accelerated boarding and disembarking at the “whistle-stops. ” This pic-
ture is of Skyliner San Francisco.

Ford 5-AT Tri-Motor

13 seats 0 105 mph


Pratt & Whitney

Wasp (450 hp) x 3


13,500 lb.


500 miles


50 feet


78 feet


12 feet

An All-Metal Airplane

The aircraft that was to become almost standard equipment, until the advent of the Boeing 247 in 1933 and the DC-2 in 1934, derived its design from a smaller aircraft built in 1923. William B. Stout had apparently watched the success of the German Junkers all-metal air­craft built in 1919 immediately after the end of the Great War; and had perhaps noticed the consistency of success of the Fokker thick-wing aerofoil. Stout’s 1-AS Air Sedan combined elements of both and first flew on 17 February 1923. Although under-powered with a 90-hp OX-5 engine, it was developed into the Stout 2-AT Air Pullman, with a 400-hp Liberty engine.

Ford Takes an Interest

The great Ford Motor Company—Edsel Ford himself—took an interest in Stout’s work. On 15 October 1924, Ford opened an airport and a manufacturing plant at Dearborn, near Detroit. The airfield would soon be equipped with two paved runways, 3,400 ft and 3,700 ft, possibly the first of their kind in the world. Ford established its own private airline, to connect its plants at Chicago and Detroit, and opened service on 13 April 1925, with the Stout 2-AT Maiden Dearborn. On 31 July of that year, Ford purchased the Stout Metal Air­plane Company.

The Ford Tri-Hsfor

When the Wright Whirlwind radial engine became available in 1925, the Stout 2-AT was modified to a tri-motor design, the 3-AT. It was not an attractive airplane, made a few test flights, and was destroyed at Dearborn on 17 January 1926. Flowever, the idea of three engines stuck, and the outcome was the famous Ford Tri-Motor. It was built under the direc­tion of William B. Mayo, Ford’s Chief Engineer, and made its first flight on 11 June 1926. The design team was led by Thomas Towle, and included John Lee, Otto Koppen, and H. A.Hicks. The test pilot, Major Shroeder, insisted on an open cockpit, but this was soon abandoned. A total of 199 Tri-Motors, in a variety of versions, was built, and because of the sturdy all-metal construction, they lasted a long time, with one or two still in flying condition even today.

Artwork size does not allow accurate scale representation of the Tri-Motor’s corrugated aluminum skin.

T. W.A.

T. A.T.





Delivery Date


Disposal and Remarks





24 Nov 28

City of Columbus later City of New York

Used by Charles Lindbergh as a flying office when surveying T. A.T.’s transcontinental route. T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Sold 14 Feb 35, subsequently several owners, incTACA Niceragua. Crashed on takeoff at Choteau, Montana, 6 May 53





22 Nov 28

The Kansas City

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Crashed, Quay, New Mexico, 29 Aug 33





28 Nov 28

City of Albuquerque

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. SACO, Colombia. 5 Apr 35. Destroyed in collision with another Ford at Medallin, 24 Jun 35.





18 Jan 29

City of Washington

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Grand Canyon Airlines 27 Mar 36. TACA11 Dec 37





18 Jan 29

City of Wichita

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Grand Canyon Airlines, 16 Jul 35. to TACA Honduras 11 Dec 37. To Mexico, Jan 46. Repaired in 1951 as the "smooth-skin Ford." To U. S.A. 1955, eventu-

ally to Evergreen Aviation, Oregon in 1990.





18 Jan 29

City of Los Angeles

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Guld Oil Corp. 22 Sep 37, then to Venezuela





16 Jan 29 (Maddux)

T. W.A. 21 Apr 31. SACO, Colombia, 5 Apr 35. TACA Honduras, Mar 39.





9 Feb 29 (Maddux)

City of Waynoka

T. W.A. 21 Apr. 31. PANAGRA, 5 Jul 34. Remodelled for heavy cargo work, with large hatch in top fuselage, for special haulage to mines in Peru and Bolivia.





26 Feb 29 (Maddux)

T. W.A. 21 Apr 31. Grand Canyon Airlines, 27 Mar 26. TACA Honduras, 11 Dec 37. To Mexico, 6 Jun 46.




3 Mar 29 (Maddux)

T. W.A. 21 Apr 31. Leslie G. Mulzer, Columbus, Ohio, 17 Feb 36. Aerovias Nacionales, Costa Rica, Mar 39




14 Jun 29

City of San Francisco

Crashed on Mt. Taylor, near Albuquerque, 3 Sep 29





26 Apr 29

City of Indianapolis

Used by U. S. Army for endurance tests. Accident on 22 Dec 29. T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Crashed Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 27 Jan 31





16 May 29

City of Philadelphia

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. R. C.A., Camden, NJ, 19 Mar 36, for extensive tests with secret radio and television projects. Star Air Lines, Anchorage, 10 Apr 41. After accident, Aug 43, stored until 18 Apr 52, sold to Clyde Sampson, California. Various owners.





22 May 29

City of St. Louis

Crashed 14 Dec 32




20 Apr 29 (Maddux)

T. W.A. 21 Apr 31. Sold to Fred Kane 3 Feb 36, Charles H. Babb, 8 Nov 38, Guinea Air-




18 Apr 30

ways, 28 Nov 38. Originally purchased by Scenic Airways, Phoenix, 18 Jun 29, then to United Aviation Corp. Chicago Mar 30. T. W.A. 30 Jan 31. Sold to St. Louis Flying Service, St. Louis, 27 Sep 37. Crashed in Colombia, 15 Apr 39





24 Jun 29 (Maddux)

City of Columbus

T. W.A. 24 Apr 31. Sold 2 Sep 37. Destroyed by fire, Mankato, Minnesota, 11 Aug 38





3 Jul 29

T. W.A. 6 Apr 31. Republic Oil, Pittsburgh, 19 Jul 37. Modified to hold 1,800 gallons of

gasoline, 450 gallons of oil, to refuel Jimmy Mattern’s Lockheed 12-А The Texan. In search for Russian polar flyers in 1937, written off at Anchorage, 21 Aug 37




26 Apr 33

Originally delivered to New England and Western Air Transportation Company, 7 May 30; then to Eastern Air Transport, Brooklyn, 16 Oct 30; then to T. W.A. This was used briefly at New York’s Downtown Skyport on the East River of Lower Manhattan, from 29 Aug 35. Sold to SCADTA, Colombia, 11 Feb 36.




2 Mar 31

Ex-SAFE (del. 1 Nov 29). Crashed, Pittsburgh, 19 Aug 31.




2 Mar 31

Ex-SAFE (del. 5 Mar 29). Destroyed, Bakersfield, 10 Feb 33.




6 Mar 31

Delivered to Continental Co., 21 Jun 30. Sold to C. N.A., Guatamala, 29 Jul 35.

Note: 4 Model 4-ATs were also transferred to T. AT. when it bought Maddux on 16 Nov 29, but title transfer wos For its 20th Anniversary celebration in July 1949, T. W.A. leased a 4-AT-5S, NC9612, City ottos Angeles.

officially recorded as 21 Apr 31. (See page 20)

TWA’s First Short-Haul Jet Fleets

TWA's First Short-Haul Jet Fleets

This DC-9-31, N990Z, was inherited when T. W.A. absorbed Ozark Air Lines and its extensive fleet (see page 97).

TWA's First Short-Haul Jet Fleets


Подпись: Fleet No. Regn. MSN Delivery Date Remarks and Disposal 8243 N943U 48132 12 Apr 89 Ex-KLM. Leased from 12 Apr 89 to 11 Nov 91. 8244 N944U 48133 21 Apr 89 Ex-KLM. Leased from 21 Apr 89 to 11 Nov 91.

Twin-Jet Choice

On 20 July 1964, T. W.A. ordered 20 Douglas DC-9-14s, plus 20 more on option) at a cost of $86 million, for its short-haul routes. It had flirted with the idea of the French Caravelle in 1962 (see page 74) and no doubt had considered the British ВАС One-Eleven, but it elected to stay with the American version of the twin-jet, a design formula that airline planners considered to be the most economical for short-haul routes.

Development of the DC-9 was rapid. The first flight was on 25 February 1965 and Delta Air Lines put it into service on 8 December of that year. T. W.A. followed soon afterwards, starting New York-Kansas City service with the -14 variant on 17 March 1966—just before Howard Hughes terminated his association with the airline that he had done so much to nur­ture (see page 73).

Not to be outdone—this was during a period when airline traffic was expanding vigor­ously—T. W.A. placed, on 2 September 1966 and 18 October 1967, two very large orders for Boeing 747s, 727s, and 707s, and augmented its order for the Boeing supersonic 2707. The airline was full of confidence, and showed it by a catchy slogan: Up, Up, and Away, with T. W.A.

TWA's First Short-Haul Jet Fleets

This early DC-9-14 is seen awaiting take-off at New York’s LaGuardia Airport.



Stinson A (tri-motor) (Marquette)

8 seats • 160 mph

Stinson A (tri-motor) (Marquette)

Marquette’s Stinson A wore the original American Airlines blue and orange color scheme with the addition of the Marquette winged logo on the aft fuselage.

Stinson A Trimotor

In January 1938, Midwest Airlines was formed in St. Louis. The name was changed almost immediately to Marquette Air Lines (named after a French missionary-explorer of Upper Michigan) and it promptly leased four Stinson Model A tri-motors from American Airlines. It began service on 20 April of that year under Mail Contract AM 58 on a route St Louis- Cincinnati-Dayton-Toledo-Detroit.

Important Route Extension

Подпись: Engines Lycoming R-680 (260 hp) x 3 MGT0W 10,2001b. Range 500 miles Length 37 feet Span 60 feet Stinson A (tri-motor) (Marquette)Within a few months, the directors approved the purchase of the stock by T. W.A. which leased the route from 14 August 1940. The Civil Aeronautics Board delayed giving the takeover its blessing for two years, but the purchase was completed on 5 December 1941. The 564-mile route, which gave T. W.A. an important link from Detroit to its transcontinental trunk line, cost $350,000.





Stinson A (tri-motor) (Marquette)

Marquette bought its small fleet of Stinsons from American Airlines, and kept the same paint scheme.




Delivery Date

Remarks and Disposal

NCI 5153



Purchased from American



Airlines. Sold to Winston



(see text above) (

W. Kratz, 31 Aug 40, and eventually exported to Tata




Airlines, India, 20 Aug 41






anscontiJentaI fZoute2




_ Columbus




Local Service in the Midwest

Подпись: The classic DC-3, still earning its keep in the 1950s and 1960s, simply because no post-war manufacturer could emulate Emerson's judgement of success by “building a better mousetrap. ’’
Local Service in the Midwest

Подпись:Local Service in the MidwestПодпись: Ozark’s second intrastate airliner, the Cessna T-50 Bobcat. Two aircraft were used from September 12 until the end of service, November 28, 1945.

Подпись: Reg. | MSN | Remarks Beech FI7 NC20769 NC47571 NC2801 D Staggerwing 307 1 1 389 r Delivered 1 Jan 45. 392 | J Cessna UC NC46817 NC49984 ■78 (T-50 Bobcat J Delivered 1 Sep 45.

The First Ozark Airlines

On 1 September 1943, a Missouri bus operator, Laddie Hamilton, with support from a colleague, Floyd W. Jones, incorporated Ozark Airlines in Springfield. This followed the initiative of L. Welch Pogue, Chairman of the Civil Aeronautics Board, by order dated 22 March 1943, to investigate the possibilities of extending air service “to the nation as a whole, including provision for local service to small communities.”

On 11 July 1944, the C. A.B. permitted operations on a strictly local basis. After sporadic operations with a few Fairchild and Stinson monoplanes, Ozark began scheduled service on 10 January 1945 on a triangular route wholly within the State of Missouri, using at first a couple of Beech F17D “Staggerwings,” and then two Cessna UC-78 twin – engined “Bamboo Bombers.” The whole affair had been somewhat cavalier in its approach, and lasted only until 28 November of the same year, because of apparent irregulari­ties in the registration process.

Parks Air Transport

Meanwhile, another aspirant to operate a local airline was Parks Air Transport, organized by Oliver L. Parks, founder
of Parks Air College at East St. Louis in 1927. On 1 Novem­ber 1946, it was selected by the C. A.B., in the Mississippi Valley Service Case, to operate a network from Tulsa to Chicago, via St. Louis and other small cities. In July 1949, the Board opened the Parks Investigation Case, as Parks had not opened service. Eventually, on 15 June 1950, Parks Air Lines started to fly from St. Louis to Chicago (see map) on the Inter Urban Grain Belt Route, but it was a case of “too little, too late.” The C. A.B. cancelled Parks’s certificate on 28 July, and simultaneously granted Ozark Air Lines a three-year experimental one.

Ozark Air Lines Begins

The rejuvenated Ozark began operations with a small fleet of Douglas DC-3s on 26 September 1950, taking over the Parks routes and immediately expanding service to almost every small community within a 200-mile radius from St. Louis. Concentrating on connections to, from, and between St. Louis and Chicago, the network reached as far west as Wichita by 1953, and Sioux City by 1955, and as far east as Louisville and Nashville. By the mid-1950s, Ozark was pro­viding good service not only to the small towns but also to every major city in six states of the Midwest.

Подпись: Ozark's DC-3 (Challenger 250)

Local Service in the MidwestПодпись: Engine Pratt & Whitney R-1830 x 2 Length 64 feet MGTOW 25,200 lb. Span 95 feet Range 1,000 miles Height 17 feet

28 seats • 190 mph

Local Service in the Midwest

The Challenger 250

During the post-war period, when the airline industry was developing rapidly on all fronts, there was much talk about the dream of building a replacement for the pre-war twin-engined Douglas DC-3, or the military C-47, that had proved to be a versatile maid-of-all-work.

Several attempts were made by manufacturers to build a replacement, but they were unsuccessful, mainly because thousands of the old DC-3s were still perfectly operational, and threatened to go on for ever. To build a brand-new DC-3, with improvements, was too costly, although a few “Hyper-DC-3s” were tried out. Ozark Air Lines elected to compromise, by extensive modifications to the old Gooney Bird: new wheel-well doors, flush antennas, a new oil-cooler scoop, new wing fillet fairings, aileron gap covers, shorter exhaust stacks, and better engine cowlings. The Ozark DC-3s were called Challenger 250s and although heavier than the standard versions, their aerodynamic improvements gave them an extra 20 mph.

This particular aircraft was built as a DST (see page 41), and was only the sixth DC-3 off the production line in Santa Monica, California. At one time it held the record for being the oldest DC-3 in commercial service. Note the streamlined “Super DC-3” landing gear doors.

Local Service in the Midwest Local Service in the Midwest


Martin 202

Problems with the 202

The launch customer for the Martin 202 had been Northwest Airlines, which had picked up the first-in-line privilege when Pennsylvania-Central had to withdraw because of financial stringency. The Minneapolis airline opened service by October, but was to regret the choice. It had a series of accidents, some of which were caused by a weakness in the wing structure. After the first one, on 29 August 1948, the 202 was grounded by the C. A.A.; and thereafter, in 1950 and early 1951, more accidents (not all attributed to the aircraft) resulted in the Northwest pilots refusing to fly them again.

T. W.A/s Choice

The competition between Martin and Convair was intense, as orders for hundreds of aircraft were in their sights. The performance characteristics between the two types (Martin had upgraded the first design with pressurization) were very similar. During 1949, Howard Hughes himself, together with his new president, Ralph Damon, and Bob Rummel, newly – promoted to chief engineer, conducted exhaustive tests on both the Martin 404 and the Con­vair 240. Hughes liked the Martin better, telephoned Eddie Rickenbacker of Eastern Air Lines, and ordered 100 404s. 60 were for Eastern (whose route structure was ideal for the 40- seater) and 40 for T. W.A. Hughes took one for himself. T. W.A.’s contract was signed on 22 February 1950. Pending deliveries, which would take a couple of years, Hughes leased a dozen of the earlier, 202s, modified as Martin 202A. During its service life through the 1950s, only one 404 was lost (see fleet list, page 62), and the reason could hardly be blamed on the manu­facturer. The 404s followed into service on lONovember 1951, and served T. W.A. well, in the shadow of the Constellations, for a whole decade.

Martin 202

The Martin 404, with one more row of seats than the 202, served T. W.A. throughout the 1950s, starting service on 10 November 1951. This is a picture of Skyliner Baltimore, recognizing the city where it was built.

Martin 202

Ralph Damon joined T. W.A. on 1 January 1949. A veteran airline administrator, he had been president of Curtiss-Wright in 1932, and became vice-president and later general manager and president of American Airlines for 13 years. He was ‘drafted’ in 1941 and for two years supervised production at Republic Aviation. In 1953, President Eisenhower appointed him to the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, but he did not complete the five-year term. For six years he was the ideal partner for Howard Hughes, complementing, with his managerial experience, the intuition and enterprise of his mercurial chief. During the festive season after Christmas, 1955, he attended a ceremony in Times Square, New York, in bad winter weather. This was to exhibit a huge T. W.A. Constellation replica, floodlit, and with its own lights. He caught pneumonia and died on 4 January 1956. His death was a great loss not only for T. W.A., but for the U. S. airline industry as a whole.

Transcontinental Air-Rail

Подпись: A grandstand crowd was in the bleachers at Los Angeles as T.A.T. dis-played its Ford Tri-Motor and its Aero-car for the rail-air connections. Подпись:Подпись:Подпись: A T.A.T. Ford 5-AT-B Tri-Motor. (The City of St. Louis)

Подпись: This lonely-looking depot, just inside the New Mexico border from Texas, had about a year of history-making activity in 1929, when passengers transferred to and from the T.A.T. Fords at the nearby Clovis airfield. Transcontinental Air-Rail

Coast-to-Coasf Luxury

On 16 May 1928, the Pennsylvania and Santa Fe Railroads, possibly with the idea of “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em created Transcontinental Air Transport (T. A.T.), in coop­eration with the North American aviation group, directed by a visionary, Clement Keys, the man who coined the phrase (as true today as it was in 1929): “90% of aviation is on the ground.” One practical demonstration of this axiom then was the novel idea of combining rail and air transport modes, mainly to avoid the hazards of flying across mountain ranges with inadequate flying equipment or navigational aids. The result was T. A.T., substantially backed by the Pennsylvania Railroad. The investment totalled $3,000,000.

The Lindbergh Line

In company with Pan American Airways, T. A.T. engaged the aviation hero, Charles Lindbergh, as its technical adviser. It was a master-stroke. Simultaneously, it acquired the unparal­leled experience of the world’s finest airman; and at the same time gained priceless publicity and promotional exposure without the cost of advertising. Where Lindbergh went, the public was sure to follow.

After the button-pressing ceremony in Los Angeles, Charles piloted one of the six aircraft used for the inaugural service, on 7 July 1929. He flew the eastbound Ford Tri­Motor, the City of Los Angeles, from Glendale to Clovis, New Mexico, where the passengers transferred, by aero-car, to the Santa Fe at nearby Portair depot.

Stretched to the Limit


Stretched to the Limit









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N984TW was the last Douglos (McDonnell Douglas) MD-80 built, and named, appropriately, Spirit of Long Beach.


MD-83 (N9402W) in flight.


Stretched to the Limit

Stretched to the Limit

Stretched to the Limit

Delivery scheme for the first DC-9-80s sported a bare-metal upper vertical fin. This was later painted all white to conform to other TWA aircraft.

Stretched to the Limit

An Old Tradition

Back in the 1930s, the Douglas company had shown considerable enterprise in developing its original twin piston-engined world-beater, the legendary DC-3. Later, in the 1940s and 1950s, it did the same with the four-engined DC-4/6/7 series; and continued the tradition of “stretch­ing” the fuselage with the DC-8 jets. It did even better with the short-haul twin-jet, the DC-9, which went into service with Delta in 1965 (see page 77). This started off as an airliner with as few as 65 seats (or up to 109 in all-economy layout); but with progressive improvements, especially in more engine power, its fuselage was stretched as never before. The Series 10’s 104-foot length was increased by 15 feet for the Series 30, and further extensions, permitting extra rows of seats, were made with the Series 40 and 50.

The Dash 80

The ultimate challenge to the Douglas engineers came when their project office proposed a fur­ther 15-foot stretch of the Series 50. This became the Series 80, or the Super 80, and follow­ing the inevitable change of nomenclature resulting from the McDonnell Douglas merger in the late 1960s, this highly successful airliner was known as the MD-80. Remarkably, its additional length, devoted entirely to the passenger cabin, permitted a seating capacity of 172, twice as many as in the first DC-9-10. The first airline to put this version, a DC-9-81, into service was Swissair, on 5 October 1980. T. W.A. took delivery of its first MD-82 in April 1983, and liked it so much that it kept buying more of both the 82 and the 83 variants. It even bought some of Swissair’s 81s and converted them to 82s.

Last of the Line

Deliveries of this fine airliner, with its unmistakable silhouette in the sky, continued until the end of 1999. The last one went to St. Louis on 28 December of that year. It had taken off from the factory where the airplane was first conceived and developed, at Long Beach, California; and although T. W.A. had abandoned its practice of naming its aircraft at the end of the piston-engined propeller era, this was a special case. T. W.A. fleet number 9654, manufacturer’s serial number (msn) 53634, registration number N984TW, was proudly named the Spirit of Long Beach.

Engines Pratt & Whitney JT8D-217C (20,000 lb) x 2 Length 148 feet

MGT0W 140,0001b Span 108 feet

Range 1,500 miles Height 30 feet

Stretched to the Limit