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Prototype 10B

On September 24, 1935, Eastern Air Lines, then a division of North American Aviation, Inc., received the first of five Lockheed Electra 10Bs. The 10Bs were powered by two Wright R-957-E3 Whirlwind engines. The Electra, 1036, bearing registration NC14958, was flown into Chandler Field, Atlanta, GA; the aircraft was to be used on the company's New Orleans-Atlanta-New York route and its Miami-Atlanta-Chicago routes. This Electra only served for two years with the airline before an increase in passenger demand forced the airline to begin to retire its Electra's in favor of the larger DC-2 and DC-3s. In July 1937 NC14958 was sold to Northwest Airlines where it likely flew for another year or so before being sold again to National Airlines, base out of St. Petersburg, FL. Following the United States' involvement in World War II, Electra 1036 was pressed into service on June 11, 1942, by the USAAF where the registration was changed to 42-57222. In the months that followed the aircraft was flown down to Gulfport, Mississippi, where it was used for training purposes; towards the end of the war, or possibly immediately after, the Electra was sold to Brazilian Airforce where it was re-registered FAB 1325. On June 24, 1946, the aircraft was turned over to VARIG, the chief airline of Brazil, and registered PP-VAU; in the beginning VARIG used its Lockheed Electra 10 aircraft on all of its routes to Rio Grande do Sul and Montevideo. In 1948 the Electra's began flying to Sao Paolo. Fun fact, VARIG's onboard flight services were introduced with the Electra! Each Electra would be loaded with a box containing snacks which would then be handed out to passengers by the co-pilot as there was usually not enough room for cabin crews. Unfortunately on October 18, 1952, while on final approach to Lages Airport, in Brazil, in IFR conditions caused by poor visibility as a result of heavy rain the aircraft bounced upon landing and hit the ground. The force of the impact sheared the left gear off and the aircraft came to rest with its left wing bent; all four occupants, three crew and one passenger, were uninjured. The aircraft, like we've seen so many times before in this series, was damaged beyond repair.

NC14958, an image that was circulated at the time the aircraft was delivered to Eastern

The Montgomery Adviser, Wed. Sept. 25, 1935

Eastern Timetable June 15, 1936 (


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