Keystone Aircraft

Keystone Aircraft Corporation was an early pioneer in airplane manufacturing. Headquartered in Bristol, Pennsylvania, it was formed as Ogdensburg Aeroway Corp in 1920 by Thomas Huff and Elliot Daland, but its name was quickly changed to Huff-Daland Aero Corp, then to the Huff-Daland Aero Company. The company made a name for itself in agricultural aircraft, and then in the United States Army Air Corps' early bomber aircraft. From 1924, James McDonnell was the chief designer.

In 1926, Huff left the company, and it was soon purchased by Hayden, Stone & Co., who increased capital to $1 million (United States) and renamed it Keystone.[1] In 1928, it merged with Loening and was known as Keystone-Loening. In 1929, it was taken over by Curtiss-Wright. Also in 1929, the Keystone- Loening plant on the East River in New York City was closed by Curtis- Wright and the operation was moved to the Bristol, Pa. Keystone plant. A small band of the top Loening management, design and shop workers (all New Yorkers) did not want to go to Bristol. They instead started their own aircraft company in a small rented shop in Baldwin, NY in Jan. 1930. The principal players were Leroy R. Grumman, Leon "Jake" Swirbul and William Schwendler. Grumman Aircraft went on to stellar heights with some of the top Naval aircraft in Navy history. Grumman also designed and built the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM) that landed US astronauts on the moon. Keystone itself became a manufacturing division of Curtiss-Wright and ceased production in 1932.[2]

Lieut. Comdr. Noel Davis and Lieut. Stanton H. Wooster were killed in their Keystone Pathfinder American Legion while conducting a test flight, just days before they were to attempt a trans-Atlantic flight for the Orteig Prize.

Aircraft Models


  1. ^ Geoff Jones. Delta Air Lines: 75 Years of Airline Excellence. p. 10.
  2. ^ Curtiss-Wright Corporation Records

External links

20th Bomb Squadron

Not to be confused with XX Bomber CommandThe 20th Bomb Squadron is a unit of the 2d Operations Group of the United States Air Force located at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana. The 20th is equipped with the Boeing B-52H Stratofortress.

Formed in May 1917 as the 20th Aero Squadron, the squadron saw combat in France on the World War I Western Front. It took part in the St. Mihiel offensive and Meuse-Argonne offensive.

After the war, it served with the Army Air Service and Army Air Corps as the 20th Bombardment Squadron During the 1920s and 1930s, the squadron was involved in field service testing of new bomber aircraft, notably the Y1B-17 Flying Fortress.

During World War II the squadron fought in the North African and Italian Campaigns. It was awarded a Distinguished Unit Citation for its actions during a raid on Steyr, Austria.

It was a part of Strategic Air Command during the Cold War. As a medium bomber squadron it deployed to stand alert at forward bases in "Reflex" operations. After equipping with Boeing B-52 Stratofortresses stood nuclear alert, but during the Viet Nam War the squadron deployed frequently to perform Operation Arc Light bombing missions. Since 1993, the 20th Bomb Squadron has flown the B-52H Stratofortress long-range strategic bomber, which can perform a variety of missions. Today the squadron is engaged in the Global War on Terrorism.

Huff-Daland Aero Corporation

Formed as Ogdensburg Aeroway Corp in 1920 in Ogdensburg, New York by Thomas Huff and Elliot Daland, its name was quickly changed to Huff-Daland Aero Corp and then in 1925 it was changed again to the Huff-Daland Aero Company with its main headquarters in Bristol, Pennsylvania. Huff-Daland produced a series of biplanes as trainers, observation planes, and light bombers for the U.S. Army and Navy.

From 1923-1924, Huff-Daland developed the first aircraft designed for crop dusting and began selling and promoting the new service through a subsidiary Huff Daland Dusters founded on March 2, 1925. Though acquisitions beginning in 1928, the dusting subsidiary became a founding component of Delta Air Lines.In 1927, the corporation was taken over by Hayden, Stone & Company, a New York City brokerage firm and in the course of the merger it became the Huff-Daland Division of the Keystone Aircraft Corporation. A single example of the Huff-Daland XB-1 bomber became the Keystone XB-1B, after its original Packard 2A-1500 engines were replaced with Curtiss V-1570-5 "Conqueror" engines. The Improved -B aircraft had better performance than the original, but still didn't compare favorably to the other aircraft of the period and never entered production.

Keystone merged with the Loening Company in 1928. By 1931, Keystone had become the Keystone Aircraft Division of the Curtiss-Wright Corporation.

Keystone-Loening Air Yacht

The Loening C-4C, later the Keystone-Loening K-85 Air Yacht following the merger of the Loening and Keystone companies, was an amphibious utility biplane built in the United States in the late 1920s. It was developed by Grover Loening from the C-1 that he had created together with Leroy Grumman, incorporating a new fuselage design. This departed from the characteristic Loening design feature of having a slender, "shoehorn" float projecting from the underside of the fuselage with an engine mounted tractor-fashion above it. Instead, the C-4C had a conventional flying-boat hull, with an enclosed cabin for passengers. The engine was mounted in a separate nacelle on the leading edge of the upper wing.

Two C-4Cs were built in 1928, shortly before the corporate merger. In 1931, Keystone-Loening built two examples of a revised version, but no further production ensued.

Thompson Aeronautical Corporation (TAC), a U.S.-based air carrier, was operating scheduled passenger service between Detroit and Cleveland in 1930 with Keystone–Loening Air Yacht aircraft with six round trip flights a day between the two cities.

Keystone-Loening Commuter

The Keystone-Loening K-84 Commuter was a single-engine closed cabin 4 place biplane amphibious flying boat built by Keystone-Loening. It was powered by a 300 hp Wright Whirlwind engine mounted between the wings with the propeller just ahead of the windscreen. It was first produced in 1929.

This airplane was featured as a model/bank by Texaco, #8 in a series "Wings of Texaco" of historic aircraft used by the company.

Keystone B-3

The Keystone B-3A was a bomber aircraft developed for the United States Army Air Corps by Keystone Aircraft in the late 1920s.

Keystone B-4

The Keystone B-4 was a biplane bomber, built by the Keystone Aircraft company for the United States Army Air Corps.

Keystone B-5

The Keystone B-5 is a light bomber made by the Keystone Aircraft company for the United States Army Air Corps in the early 1930s. The B-5A was a Keystone B-3A with Wright Cyclone rather than Pratt & Whitney engines.

Keystone B-6

The Keystone B-6 was a biplane bomber developed by the Keystone Aircraft company for the United States Army Air Corps.

Keystone LB-5

The Keystone LB-5 (originally ordered under the Huff-Daland name) was a bomber aircraft produced in the United States in the late 1920s. Its manufacturer nicknamed it the Pirate, but this name was not officially adopted by the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC).

Keystone LB-6

The Keystone LB-6 and LB-7 were 1920s American light bombers, built by the Keystone Aircraft company for the United States Army Air Corps, called Panther by the company, but adoption of the name was rejected by the U.S. Army.

Keystone NK

The Keystone NK or Keystone Pup was a two-seat biplane trainer built by Keystone Aircraft for the United States Navy.

Keystone Pathfinder

The Keystone K-47 Pathfinder was an airliner developed in the United States in the late 1920s, built only in prototype form.

Keystone Patrician

The Keystone K-78 Patrician was an airliner developed in the United States in the late 1920s, built only in prototype form.

Keystone Pronto

The Keystone K-55 Pronto was a mail plane developed in the United States in the late 1920s. It was a conventional single-bay, unequal-span biplane design with slightly staggered wings. The pilot sat in an open cockpit, in tandem with a second cockpit that could carry two passengers side-by-side. The fixed, tailskid undercarriage had divided main units.

A number of these aircraft were purchased by the government of Peru. Operated by the aviation arm of the Peruvian Navy, these aircraft initiated the first airmail service into the Peruvian Amazon. The first flight of this service was made by two Prontos, piloted by Leonardo Alvariño Herr and Harold B. Grow from Lima to San Ramón on 26 October 1927.

At least one Peruvian Pronto was fitted with pontoons and used to survey the Amazon River for locations suitable for seaplane operations.

In the Colombia-Peru War one Peruvian K-55 flow by Lieutenant Suero was captured by the Colombian Army.

Keystone XLB-3

The Keystone XLB-3 (originally built under the Huff-Daland name) was a prototype bomber biplane developed in the United States in the late 1920s. It was a twin-engine development of the single-engine LB-1, brought about by a change in policy by the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC).

Keystone XO-15

The Keystone XO-15 was an American prototype observation aircraft, built by the Keystone Aircraft Corporation for the United States Army Air Corps, First flown in 1930, only a single prototype was built.

Keystone XOK

The Keystone XOK was an American biplane observation floatplane developed for the United States Navy during the early 1930s.

Loening Aeronautical Engineering

Loening Aeronautical Engineering Corporation was founded 1917 by Grover Loening and produced early aircraft and amphibious aircraft beginning in 1917. When it merged with Keystone Aircraft Corporation in 1928, some of its engineers left to form Grumman. Loening formed a new enterprise, Grover Loening Aircraft Company, in 1929, which eventually closed in 1932.

Naval Aircraft Factory PN

The Naval Aircraft Factory PN was a series of open cockpit American flying boats of the 1920s and 1930s. A development of the Felixstowe F5L flying boat of the First World War, variants of the PN were built for the United States Navy by Douglas, Keystone Aircraft and Martin.

Huff-Daland, Keystone, and Keystone-Loening aircraft
Manufacturer designations
Patrol aircraft
Observation aircraft
Scout aircraft


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