Originally called All American Aviation, was one of several
carriers that developed and flourished as a result of the
Mail Act of 1925 (Kelly Act). The Air Mail Act of 1925 was the first
major piece of legislation created by Congress in 1925 that would effect
the aviation industry.
In essence, this
Act authorized the awarding of government mail contracts to private carries,
established the rates for transporting mail and it set the airmail rates.
Contracts were awarded through the United States Postal Service, and contracts
were awarded through a bidding process.
This was the first major piece of legislation created
by Congress in 1925 that would effect the aviation industry. In essence,
this Act authorized the awarding of government mail contracts to private
carries, established the rates for transporting mail and it set the airmail rates. Contracts
were awarded through the United States Postal Service, and contracts were
awarded through a bidding process. This legislation allowed the postal
service to pay $3.00 per pound for mail transported by air carriers.
This Act inspired owners of aircraft and investors to start up air carrier
services, providing airmail service. All American Aviation was one of several
carriers that grew out of the Kelly Act. All American Aviation had procured
airmail contracts from the United States Postal Service. The contracts
were to deliver mail to and from Allegheny Mountain region of Pennsylvania,
West Virginia and eastern Ohio.
Many Air carriers did not provide air passenger carriage as the carriage
of mail was much more profitable and aircraft were limited in gross weight,
roughly around 3,500 pounds. However, Airmail
Act of 1930, encouraged airline carriers to purchase larger aircraft,
increasing the likelihood of being awarded airmail contracts. It also stimulated
the carriers to fill space on the aircraft with passengers.
In the Mid 1940's, All American Aviation changed its name to All American
Airways, purchased larger aircraft such as the DC-3 and began carrying
passengers. Throughout the 1940's, and early 1950's, All American Aviation
began taking on new passenger and cargo routes. By the early 1950's, All
American Aviation had over twelve DC-3 aircrafts.
In 1953, the air carrier again changed its name to Allegheny Airlines
after the Allegheny mountains and river. This in recognition to which the
carrier was based and the heart of the air carrier route system. Throughout
the mid 1950's, and early 1960's, Allegheny operated Convair 440's, 540's
and Martin Executives. By 1963, the carrier had a feet of 38 aircrafts
which included 23 Convair 440's and 15 Martin Executives. Also during this
year the carrier moved its maintenance, engineering, flight operations
and flight control personnel from Washington to Greater Pittsburgh International
With the passing of the Airline
Deregulation Act of 1978 airline carriers were provided with new freedoms
to expand their route systems and the flexibility to develop innovative
pricing structures. This flexibility allowed the carrier to further grow
into the markets of Arizona, Texas, Colorado and Florida. In 1979, Allegheny
changed its name to US Air to reflect its growth within the United States.
By the late 1980's, the airline industry began to experience the consolidation
of air carriers to become larger airlines due to high competition for air
routes and passengers. US Air, in its desire to remain competitive, acquired
Pacific Southwest Airlines and Piedmont
Airlines. The merger of Pacific Southwest Airlines allowed US Air to
expanded into the mid Atlantic markets. By 1983, US Air had revenues of
By the 1990's, US Air had expanded its routes to Frankfurt and London
through the merger of Piedmont. In 1992, US Air assumed management of
Shuttle and renamed the carrier US Air Shuttle. In the same year, US
Air and British Airways announced plans to form the world's largest airline
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