The Nation: Happy 40th

Talk about durability. And versatility. And ubiquity. The DC-3 made its maiden flight on Dec. 17, 1935. All told, Douglas Aircraft built more than 10,000 of the planes. Forty years later no fewer than 3,000 of them are still flying as far afield as Burma, Canada and some parts of the U.S. A twin-engine work horse that flew coast to coast in an unheard-of 15 hours in the late 1930s, the DC-3 was the first American aircraft to turn a profit from passengers only. It was also the first to offer heated cabins, soundproofing and power brakes.

In World War...

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