In 1935, the first Douglas DC-3 took to the skies which began an incredible advancement in transportation that started the world on its way to a fast, reliable, and safe way to travel. The DC-3 had a lasting effect on the airline industry and made it one of the most significant transports ever made.
The Dc-3 was an all-metal monoplane that was designed to be an all-sleeper version of the DC-2. It was fast, reliable could operate off short runways. Plus it had a good range (for the time), easy to maintain, and provide passengers with great comfort.
In the 1930s, the DC-3 pioneered many new routes across the country, making it possible to fly transcontinental in a matter of a few hours. It was the first airliner to make money by carrying passengers alone.
The Civil DC-3 ended production in 1942, but the military venison, the C-47 (also known as the Dakota in England) continued on in production until 1950. There were 607 Civil DC-3s and over 16,000 military versions of all types built between 1936 and 1950.
After World War II, as aviation technology advanced, big four-engine aircraft like the Lockheed Constellation and the DC-4 replaced the smaller DC-3. However, the DC-3 continued to service many communities through the years.
There were estimated over 2,000 DC-3s still flying as of 2013 throughout the world. Most of these aircraft were used in a “niche “role, quite a testament to the design of this popular and sturdy aircraft.