How William Boeing built a huge aircraft manufacturing company

On October 1 in the year 1881, the most successful pioneer in aviation was born in Michigan, United States of America. His name was William Boeing, the founder of The Boeing Company, one of the largest aircraft manufacturers in the world.

William Boeing
William Boeing (Credit: washington.edu)

William Boeing was the son of a German immigrant who made a fortune in lumber and mining. At the age of eight, William’s father passed away and his mother remarried. He attended Yale University but he did not finish a course. He travelled to Washington State on the west coast and established a lumber company there, shipping forest products to the east coast via Panama Canal.

In 1909, William Boeing became fascinated with aircraft when he visited the Alaska–Yukon–Pacific Exposition held in Seattle. Subsequently, he became a pilot and later, he asked a friend to assemble his own aircraft right there in Seattle. In 1916, he decided to put up an aircraft manufacturing company with the help of Conrad Westervelt. Thus The Boeing Company was born which at that time was called Pacific Aero Products Co.

During the First World War, the United States Navy ordered 50 planes. After the war, the company set up an airmail service which soon evolved into United Airlines. However, in 1934, the US government ordered the separation of the civilian airline from the aircraft manufacturing. It also divested of its eastern manufacturing operations which later became United Technologies.

William Boeing died of heart attack in 1956 at the age of 74. He had a son with wife Bertha. At present, The Boeing Company is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. It is the single largest exporter of the United States. In 2019, it had revenues of more than $101 billion with employees of more than 161,000.

References
https://disciplesofflight.com/william-boeing/
http://www.encyclopedia.com/people/history/historians-miscellaneous-biographies/william-edward-boeing
http://www.boeing.com/history/pioneers/william-e-boeing.page
http://fortune.com/fortune500/boeing/

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