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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Flying out of Harrisburg

Flying out of Harrisburg

Back in the early 60s, flying was still a pretty special event - at least in the mind of a 10 or 12 year old. Going to Harrisburg, PA's airport was exciting. Here are a couple of American's modern fleet in Harrisburg.

Photo Don Hall, Sr.
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On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

It's STILL Pretty Cool to Fly!

I flew steerage 1968 to 2001 (w/the exception First Class on a Delta Convair 990 HOU - LGA in 1971 when my Eastern Airlines 727 went tech & I was an unaccompanied minor - filet mignon in First!!!)
I have flown only First and Business Class since 2001. & I get such a buzz out of it, even on the 'wrong' side of 54 years ago.

Not Harrisburg Airport.

The 28th Division of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard aircraft maintenance hangar was located at what we then called Harrisburg-York State Airport, throughout the sixties. As a pilot for the PARNG, I flew in and out of there frequently from 1963 through 1972. At no time did I see any major airlines traffic or any aircraft that large at that facility. The other facility in the area was Olmsted Air Force Base which was not open to civilian air traffic, during those years but later became Harrisburg International Airport.

Capital City Airport

We were stationed at Olmsted AFB, father was a career AF officer, but if I remember correctly, it was still military only until late 1968 early 1969 and no civilian service before then. What they called Capital City Airport over in New Cumberland handled civil aviation until Olmsted closed and later became Harrisburg/Middletown International. But I think it was only serviced by smaller Convairs and Martins?

Great shot regardless, Bob O'Donovan


The best way to distinguish a 6 from a 7 is not the prop spinner, but the number of prop blades. All DC-6's have 3 bladed props and all DC-7's have 4 bladed props. Spinners could be found on either.

Andy is correct

That is definitely a DC-6B. My dad flew these for United Airlines, later transitioned to the DC-7, which he jokingly called "the best 3-engined airplane United ever had" because of its frequent tendency to lose an engine. The best visual clue to distinguish a DC-6 from a DC-7 is whether the prop has a bare hub (DC-6) or a pointed spinner (DC-7)


Harrisburg International Airport was actually Olmsted Air Force Base until at least 1969, but I believe the USAF shut down operations there as early as 1966. I'm not sure if this is really a picture of Harrisburg.

Flying out of Harrisburg?

I worked for American Airlines from 1959 to 1969 as an Agent, a Meteorology Assistant and a Crew Scheduler. American definitely did not fly into Harrisburg during that period, and as far as I know, never has. Sure the locale is correct for the DC-7 photo?

Most outstanding airline aircraft?

I'd like to think the Lockheed Constellation series was the finest piston-engine airliner ever built.


N90752, a Douglas DC-6B, first flew on April 13, 1951. It was in the American Airlines fleet until 1962 when it was sold to Iran Air which operated it under registration number EP-AEU. In 1972 it was withdrawn from service and subsequently broken up.

Flying out of Harrisburg

That is an American Airlines DC 6B. The "B" model is probably the most outstanding airline aircraft ever built. I have flown American Airlines aircraft from the DC 3 though the Boeing 747. I flew the Convair 240 in the back ground in to Harrisburg also. It was a fun aircraft.

DC-7, not DC-3

It's a DC-7, not a DC-3.

a very nice picture! even if

a very nice picture! even if I would not call a DC3 modern in the 60's. ;)

[This is a DC-7. - Dave]

Harrisburg Airport

What a great pic. Thanks Don!

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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