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Sky Chief: 1941

Sky Chief: 1941

July 1941. "Working on an engine of one of the airliners. Municipal airport, Washington, D.C." Acetate negative by Jack Delano. View full size.


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The cowl is secured by DZUS fasteners, which must have been new. Quarter-turn screws encouraged not to unscrew by a ramp and a spring.

It always seems too flimsy but seems to work.

I was a DC-3 Stewardess

During early 1965-l967, I flew as a stewardess for Northeast Airlines out of Boston. At the time, Northeast was owned by Howard Hughes of Hughes Aircraft; he also owned TWA at the time. The airline was sold to Storer Broadcasting in late l965.

My favorite piece of equipment was not their new 727-200, nor the wonderful Convair 880, nor their Vintage DC-6, but it was the DC-3, or C-47 during WWII. Our pilot instructors told us it was the safest plane in the world. I bid schedules that always included WWII pilot and co-pilot. These men were excellent at the job. I was the only stew in the 24-passenger cabin. We flew all over New England including Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket Island, Maine, N.H., Massachusetts, Vermont in the DC-3. Senator Margaret Chase Smith of Maine, the longest serving woman in the Senate, was very instrumental in keeping New England routes served by Northeast.

Today, my husband and I live on a ranch in Texas. Whenever Raytheon Technology flies their DC-3 over our ranch, we run outside to enjoy the sound. Nothing in the air space sounds a wonderful as a DC-3, with their big Pratt & Whitney engines.

Familiar terms

My father is a WWII USAAF veteran who continued in the aviation field after the war. He was a mechanic and later inspector for United, and by the time of his retirement he was certified for Airframe & Powerplant on every United airliner from the DC-3 through the 767. When he was laid off for a year or so during a late 1940s slump, he worked for Capital and hated it. He was glad to be back with the big boys by 1950.

Penn Central Airlines

The DC-3 being serviced belongs to Penn Central Airlines, which became Capital Airlines in 1947. In 1960 Capital Airlines Merged with United Airlines.


Lots of searching, results here. Aircraft is a Douglas DC-3 with Wright R-1820 Cyclone engines, operated by Pennsylvania Central.

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