Delta Air Lines’ First Passenger Flight — 1929

by Paula Bosse

by Paula Bosse

Delta Air Lines has had a longer — and more important — association with Dallas than you might think. On June 17, 1929, Delta made its first-ever passenger flight, from Dallas to Jackson, Mississippi via Shreveport and Monroe, Louisiana. According to the Love Field website, “Early flights operated from a passenger terminal near Bachman Lake, which later served as Southwest Airlines’ first headquarters building.” On that first flight, the five passengers sat in wicker chairs and could roll down windows (!) for needed ventilation. The flight took five hours. One of the first ads, from the Delta Flight Museum page, looked like this:

Delta passenger service ad ca. September 1929.

Forty-some-odd years later, the ads — and Dallas — got a bit more sophisticated.

delta_dallas_fur

delta_dallas_fredric-sweney_playing-cardsArtist: Fredric Sweney

And we can’t leave out Cowtown!

delta_fort-worth

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UPDATE, June 20, 2017: This almost-three-year-old post got a TON of hits yesterday, and I couldn’t figure out why. Eventually, though, I tracked it down: it had to do with yesterday’s Final Jeopardy question (or is it “answer”?):

delta_jeopardy_061917

Nice to see that Jeopardy is incorporating Dallas history into the show!

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Top travel poster — showing Fort Worth in the distance, I guess? — by Jack Laycox.

For a really well-researched article by Timothy Harper describing that first flight, click here (the Dallas bit is contained in the last seven paragraphs).

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Copyright © 2014 Paula Bosse. All Rights Reserved.

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