| The Douglas DC-6 was
one of the first airplanes to fly a regularly scheduled around-the-world
route. With its higher performance, increased accommodation, greater
payload and pressurized cabin.
American Airlines and United Airlines ordered
the commercial DC-6 in 1946, and Pan American Airways used the DC-6 to
start tourist-class service across the North Atlantic. The 29th DC-6
was ordered by the Air Force, adapted as the Presidential aircraft and
designated the VC-118. It was delivered on July 1, 1947, and called The
Independence after President Harry Trumanís hometown.
The larger, all-cargo DC-6A first flew Sept. 29,
1949; the larger capacity DC-6B, which could seat up 102 people, first
flew Feb. 10, 1951. After the Korean War broke out in 1951, the military
ordered DC-6As modified as either C-118A "Liftmaster"
personnel carriers, as the Navyís R6D transports or as MC-118As for
aero-medical evacuation. Between 1947 and 1959, Douglas built a total of
704 DC-6s. In 1998, the DC-6 was still flying with smaller airlines
around the world.
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