This Week In Business Travel History – 18 March 2012
The first U.S. railroad tunnel was completed in 1834. The Staple Bend Tunnel, 901 feet (275 meter) long, is located near Johnstown, Pennsylvania, and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1994.
In 1903, the Wright brothers filed for one of the most famous patents in history – a powered flying machine. The patent was based on a modified version of their second 1902 glider, which they successfully tested at Kill Devil Hill, North Carolina. Five years later, the Wright brothers established a Wright airplane company with the help of industrialist Lazre Weiller.
The Standard Time Act (also known as the Calder Act) was enacted in 1918. It implemented standard time and Daylight Saving Time , and authorized the Interstate Commerce Commission to define each time zone. Oddly enough, the section of the act that created Daylight Saving Time was repealed the following year (only to then be added again through the Uniform Time Act of 1966).
In 1930, Clessie Cummins set the diesel engine speed record of 80.34 mph (129.39 kph) in his diesel-powered Packard Roadster at Daytona Beach. His company, Cummins Inc., still exists today as a major designer and manufacturer diesel engines for trucks, among other things.
In 1960, Nordair, an airline which operated from the 1950s to the 1980s, began regular service between Montreal, Canada and Resolution Bay, Cornwallis Island, also in Canada. It was the first route within the Artic Circle to see jet aircraft service.
The Soviet/Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov took an important business trip in 1965 – the first spacewalk. His walk, which took place outside the Voskhod 2 spacecraft, lasted for 12 minutes 9 seconds. Mr. Leonov will celebrate his 78th birthday this May.
In 1971, the U.S. Senate voted to pull funding from Boeing’s supersonic transport (SST) project, which led to its ultimate demise. The Boeing 2707 SST still managed to leave a legacy – its supercritical airfoil is now a standard feature on all jet aircraft, and the former Seattle SuperSonics basketball team was named thusly after the Seattle-based company first won a government contract to build the plane at Boeing’s factory there. At the time funding was cancelled, there were 115 unfulfilled orders from 25 airlines.
Finally, this week in 1977, the U.S. began restricting its citizens from visiting Cambodia, Cuba, North Korea, and Vietnam. While some of these restrictions have since eased up, the average American still cannot enter Cuba or North Korea today.