Corporations: The Eccentric

Howard Hughes, the billionaire eccentric, has had money and power in quantity. But nothing ever seemed to mean so much to him as his control of Trans World Airlines. A pilot obsessed, Hughes, now 60, once set a coast-to-coast speed record, flew round-the-world in 91 hours in 1938, conceived the Constellation airliner, was badly hurt in two crashes. He bought control of TWA from Lehman Bros, in 1939, becoming the only operating chief of a major U.S. airline who also owned it. After a long series of bitter battles with bankers and managers, he found his airline bogged in...