National Affairs: Ground Loop

The smoke-swirled office was littered with sandwich scraps, cigaret stubs and half-filled cups of cold coffee. At 5:12 a.m., two haggard, bleary men—Paul Richter, vice president of Transcontinental & Western Air, Inc. and David Behncke, president of the Airline Pilots Association (A.F.L.), scratched weary signatures on a truce. After 25 days, the first major U.S. airline strike was over.

The dawn broke cheerlessly for both sides. The 1,400 striking pilots, out-of-pocket $850,000 in lost wages, had not yet won their fight for more pay for flying four-motored Constellations and Skymasters (TIME,...

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