Flight Operations

February 3 at 7 p.m. and February 6 at noon, “Eastern Airlines,” HFF

Led initially by World War I flying ace Eddie Rickenbacker, Eastern Airlines was one of the “Big Four” domestic airlines created by the 1930 “Spoils Conference.” A near-monopoly of the New York to Florida market (“Number One to the Sun”) supported rapid growth. Labor disputes and debt strained the company under former Apollo 8 astronaut Frank Borman, who assumed executive leadership in 1975 and continued until 1986. In that year Frank Lorenzo acquired the airline and moved most of its assets to Texas Air and Continental Airlines. Eastern ran out of money and was liquidated in 1991 with most of its routes to Latin America and the Caribbean acquired by American and Delta Airlines. Hear Bill McCutcheon explain the reasons for the rise and fall of this important airline.

February 20 and 21, “Northwest Aviation Conference and Trade Show,” Puyallup Fairgrounds

Visit HFF at the Northwest Aviation Conference and Trade Show at the Puyallup Fairgrounds. This mid-winter event features over 300 displays of everything aviation. NW Aviation Conference & Trade Show website

March 4 at 7 p.m., “Airlines Celebration,” HFF

Join us to celebrate airlines and the airline history series on the eve of the final presentation, “Imperial Airways.” Wine tasting will feature Northwest wines with aviation labels including “Grumpy Red.” In keeping with the political season, we will hold a caucus for “Airline Commander-in-Chief” during which each of our airline presenters (for United, American, Northwest, TWA, Eastern and Imperial) will seek your vote for the most effective airline executive in history. Results of voting will be announced before the end of the evening. Finally, Andy Wyatt will offer a trailer of his Imperial Airways presentation and stories about his RAF fighter pilot experiences including 300 air show demonstrations as a member of the Red Arrows.

Airline alumnae from all airlines will be admitted free of charge. Please wear your uniform. Join us to celebrate history.

March 5 at noon, “Imperial Airways,” HFF

British Airways pilot and former RAF Red Arrow Andy Wyatt will present “Imperial Airways,” the early British commercial long-haul carrier famous for connecting England with South Africa, India and the Far East. Formed in 1924 through a merger of four existing carriers, the airline carried 11,395 passengers in its first year, many on the London-to-Paris route it pioneered. Early aircraft included the de Havilland DH.34 and the Handley Page W8f. In 1937 the airline introduced the Short Empire flying boats allowing service to Rome, Athens, Khartoum, Nairobi, Cape Town, New Zealand and Australia. Two years later the airline merged into British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC), ultimately becoming part of British Airways.

Later this year Andy will retrace the 1925 survey flight of Sir Alan Cobham from London to Cape Town. Regular Imperial Airways service of this route opened to passengers in 1932 using a de Havilland Hercules. Andy intends to fly a de Havilland Rapide (DH.89). IA London-Cape Town spanned ten days. Today, the BA flight requires ten hours. Come hear about this incredible journey. Video – The Long Haul Pioneers

To become a member and participate in any or all of these activities, please call Visitor Services at 425.348.3200 or email visitorservices@historicflight.org.

Mustang in the Air

Mustang in the Air

Bad Kitty (Grumman Tigercat)

Bad Kitty (Grumman Tigercat)

Four Ship Formation

Four Ship Formation

One Response to “Flight Operations”

  1. Pixie says:

    01/29/2011: I discovered your collection today after a visit to Flight Heritage, and they told me to go check out Historic Flight. I had a wonderful time and was very impressed with your aircraft! I am truly encouraged to know that everything is in flying condition. I can’t wait to go back. I was really happy to see the Tiger Cat and also the P-51B Mustang. I see the P-51D regularly but not the B-model. I have never seen the Tiger Cat up close, and I would LOVE to see that one fly.
    By the way, I recognize one of the pictures on your site called “Four Ship Formation.” That is three P-51 Mustangs flying formation with the F-22, and that had to be taken at the Gathering of Mustangs and Legends 2007 in Ohio, which I attended and took several photos like that one. That sure was a great event, and I am forever thankful to everyone who put that together.

    Crystal (a.k.a. Pixie)

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