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Lloyd Stearman

View at Kansas Memory

Creator: Boeing Aircraft Company

Date: Between 1958 and 1960

Level of Description: Item

Material Type: Photograph

Call Number: B Stearman, Lloyd *1

Unit ID: 223538

Summary: Lloyd Stearman was born on 0ctober 26, 1898 in Wellsville, Kansas. He attended Kansas State University until the beginning of World War I when he left school to join the U. S. Naval Reserve. It was during his service in the Naval Reserve that he learned to fly Curtiss N-9 seaplane. After the war he was hired as a mechanic by E. M. Laird Airplane Co., later the Swallow Airplane Manufacturing Co. In 1925, Stearman joined Walter Beech and Clyde Cessna to form the Travel Air Manufacturing Company. Stearman left in 1926 and went to Venice, California, where he established the Stearman Aircraft Corporation. A year later he returned to Kansas and set up his factory in Wichita. An aircraft holding company that included Boeing acquired Stearman's corporation in 1929, but the company continued to operate under the Stearman name for many years. Eventually it became the Wichita Division of The Boeing Company. Although Stearman left the company in 1931, Boeing engineers continued to use his drawings. In 1931 Stearman and partners acquired the then bankrupt Lockheed Aircraft Company in Santa Barbara, California, becoming president of the company and designing aircraft. He left Lockheed in in 1935 to work for the federal government and other companies, including the Stearman-Hammond Corporation, which he formed in 1936. He returned to Lockheed in 1955 as a senior engineer and retired in 1968. In retirement he formed a new Stearman Aircraft Corporation and worked designing new planes until ill health prevented him from working. He died in Northridge, California, on April 3, 1975.

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Title (Main title): Lloyd Stearman


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