Delta Air Lines
The above shot has long been one
of my favorite airliner photographs, and was one of the first
in my airline collection. I acquired it from Delta Air
Lines in 1947 when I was 16 years old.
DC-3s were placed into Delta service starting in
1941. All told they operated roughly 25 of
them. During WW II several of their aircraft
were impressed into service while the airline itself
performed pilot and mechanic
training in addition to military cargo flights. In the post war
airline was granted route extensions to Chicago, Knoxville, Charleston,
S.C. and Miami
Jacksonville). In 1951 Delta, along with most other
carriers, effected the new "white
top" look, and with it a totally new paint scheme. Below is an
image of the same machine,
by now having the shed
the "C" of "NC" loading passengers at Atlanta in 1953.
On 1 May 1953 Delta merged
with Chicago and
Southern Airlines, adding 22 domestic cities
and a Caribbean route to
their network. At the time this occurred, in deference to the
C & S employees,
all Delta machines were repainted with the dual title of Delta-C&S.
corporate name remained Delta Air Lines, Inc. Despite their
that it wouldn't
happen, the "C&S" bit was quietly dropped after about a year and
U.S. airline legend dropped into obscurity.