General Air Lines  Douglas DC-3  NC13731                     (c/n  1257)


                                       When the U.S. Government cancelled the air mail contracts in February 1934 due to the corruption
                                       which had occurred under Walter Folger Brown's leadership of the Post Office Department, the U.S.
                                       Army began the chore of carrying the mails.  Following a disastrous couple of months during which at
                                       least four crashes to military mail planes occurred, President Roosevelt admitted that this was a bad plan
                                       and invited new bids for air mail contracts.  However, there were two main provisos for holding a new
                                       contract:  One was that manufacturing concerns had to divest themselves of their airline operating
                                       divisions, and the other was that the former companies which had enjoyed the favor's of Brown's
                                       "spoils" could not bid.   This led, of course, to a general restructuring of airline corporate papers,
                                       wherein American Airways became American Airlines, Eastern Air Transport became Eastern Air
                                       Lines, etc.  Western Air Express, fearing that even the names of its Board of Directors and even the
                                       connotation of the word "Western"  would anger the government, chose to float a new airline under
                                       the name of its holding company (General Motors) and bid its contracts under the name of General
                                       Air Lines.  Four DC-2s were acquired, two of which are seen above.  (Since this was a thinly veiled
                                       disguise of Western Air Express, I am positioning this airline here rather than in its correct alphabetical
                                       place).  North American Aviation managed to retain an element of joint operating and manufacturing in
                                       that it held General Aviation (which had purchased Fokker) and Eastern Air Transport. When financier
                                       William A. Coulter tried to purchase General Motors's shares in both Western Air Express and Eastern,
                                       General Aviation forced a liquidation dividend as a condition of sale and General Lines was dissolved. 
                                       The DC-2s were absorbed into the Eastern Air Lines fleet and WAE , reduced now to virtually nothing,                                    
                                       became an autonomous company again.    Since images of General DC-2s are extremely rare, I am
                                       appending one below (via Douglas Aircraft Corp) even though the identity of the individual aircraft cannot
                                       be ascertained. Incidentally, NC13731 above, went to the Royal Australian Air Force in WW II becoming
                                       A30-12 with call sign VH-CRF.