No. 4206. Lockheed DL-1 (NC497H c/n 135)
Photographed at Lockheed Factory, Burbank, California, USA, ca. 1929, by Norman Loop

Lockheed DL-1

12/22/2006. Remarks by Jack McKillop: "In July 1929, 87-percent of the assets of the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation were purchased by the Detroit Aircraft Corporation of Detroit, Michigan, USA. Detroit Aircraft owned a number of aviation related businesses including aircraft manufacturers (Ryan and Eastman), Grosse Isle Airport, Michigan [located about 17 mls (27 km) south of Detroit], Park Air College in East St. Louis, Illinois, USA, and other entities. Lockheed was organized as a division of the Detroit Aircraft Corp.

The DL-1 was a modernized version of the Lockheed Vega 5C and was developed by Detroit Aircraft. Three Detroit-Lockheed Model Ones (DL-1s) were assembled in Detroit, Michigan, with a duralumin fuselage made in the Michigan city and wooden wings made by Lockheed in Burbank. This aircraft, the first of the DL-1s, was completed in February 1930 and in June 1930, American aviatrix Amelia Earhart borrowed the aircraft and set three woman's speed and load records at Grosse Isle Airport, Detroit. The last of the three DL-1s survived in Mexico until 1946.

The Great Depression hit the American aircraft industry hard and Detroit Aircraft went into receivership on October 27, 1931, and the Lockheed Division was acquired by an insurance and trust company in Los Angeles. Lockheed built three more aircraft but the company failed and was closed on June 16, 1932. However, a new Lockheed Aircraft was born five days later when a group of investors bid US$40,000 (US$588,321 in 2006 dollars) for the assets of the company and, since they were the only bidders, they acquired them and Lockheed went on to produce some of the world's greatest aircraft."

Created May 22, 2005