- Transcontinental Air Transport
Transcontinental Air Transport (T-A-T) was airline founded in
1928by Clement Melville Keysthat was to merge in 1930 with Western Air Expressto form what became TWA.
Keys enlisted the help of
Charles Lindberghto design a transcontinental network to get government airmail contracts. Lindbergh was to establish numerous airports across the country in this effort.
On July 7, 1929, it began the first transcontinental trips (sort of). It initially offered a 48-hour train/plane trip with the first leg being on the
Pennsylvania Railroadovernight from New York Cityto Columbus, Ohiowhere passengers boarded a plane at Port Columbus International Airportthat included stops in Indianapolis, St. Louis, Kansas City, Wichita, and finally Waynoka, Oklahoma. There passengers caught the Santa Fe Railroadfor an overnight trip to Clovis, New Mexicowhere they caught a flight to Albuquerque, Winslow, Az., Los Angeles and San Francisco. Its slogan was "Harnessing the Plane and the Iron Horse."
Cynics of the implementation of the plane/train concept were to deride its TAT abbreviation as "Take A Train."
The plane used the
Ford Trimotorand was one of the first to offer meals en route. It was also one of the first to be geared to passenger service (while most airlines at the time had focused on air mail).
In 1929 it merged with
Maddux Air Linesand in 1930, during what was to become the Air Mail Scandal, it merged with Western Air Expressto form Transcontinental & Western Air (T&WA) that was to become TWA.
* [http://www.americanheritage.com/articles/magazine/ah/1975/1/1975_1_22.shtml American Heritage article]
* [http://www.pbs.org/kcet/chasingthesun/companies/twa.html PBS Chasing Sun profile]
* [http://www.nasm.si.edu/research/arch/findaids/keys/keys_sec_3.html Biography of Clement Melville Keys]
* [http://alphabetilately.com/TandP.html Alphabetilately profile]
* [http://earthfriendarts.tripod.com/coastprint.html Poster for the train-plane]
* [http://220.127.116.11/Museum/Ephemera/PRR_TAT_1929.html Paperweight commemoration]
* [http://www.timetableimages.com/ttimages/tat.htm Timetables]
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