Potted history of aviation in Dallas
The first commercial flight on Texas soil was in 1926 when a National Air Transport’s airmail plane flew from Dallas to Chicago. Passenger service began the following year. In 1935, Braniff Airways made Lovel Field airport its base, from where it operated until it went bankrupt in the early 90s. Later, Dallas became American Airlines’ hub. During the Second World War, two aircraft manufacturing plants based in Dallas-Fort Worth employed 70,000 people and built 50,000 planes.
Texas airspace industry grew by leaps and bounds. The Dallas-Ft. Worth area produced bombers, fighters, and helicopters, as well as missile parts. Commercial aviation also grew exponentially. In 1974, for example, DFW airport was opened and today it’s the 4th busiest airport in the US and 11th in the world.
Cavanaugh Flight Museum
The Cavanaugh Flight Museum is located in Addison regional airport, about a 20-minute drive from Downtown Dallas. Most airplanes are military and span most of the 20th century. All the planes are in working condition and can be booked for a ride.
The collection includes First World War planes like the Red Baron’s Fokker Dr.1. This, like some of the older planes, is actually a replica based on factory specs, as there are no original aircraft left.
The Second World War is represented by a Douglas A-26C Invader and a B-25H, among others. Not all of them are American made, there are some British and German birds too, like a deHavilland Tiger Moth or a Messerschmitt.
The Douglas AD-6 / A-1H Skyraider, the Lockheed F-104A Starfighter and the Sikorsky UH-34D Seahorse chopper are some of the aircraft used during the Korean War and the 1950s.
The Bell AH-1J Sea Cobra and Bell UH-1B Iroquois helicopters are some of the ítems of the Vietnam War and Cold War collection, as is the Russian MiG-17.
It’s not all birds, though. There are a couple of vintage cars and a Sherman tank.
4572 Claire Chennault, Addison, TX 75001 | 972-380-8800 | Opening times: Mon-Sat.: 9am – 5pm, Sun: 11am – 5pm | Admission: Adults: $12, Senior citizens and military: $8, Minors (4-12): $6