75 Years of Predictions: The Good, the Bad and the Just ‘Plane’ Crazy

At each major milestone in this publication, many executives would pause to pontificate about what the future might hold for the growing airfreight industry. Some people – predictably – were way off on their predictions, but some had a preternatural ability to be spot on with their vision of the future. And then there were a few that were a little too far out there to be taken seriously. We’ll let you be the judge.

  • “Today’s relationships in the world at large have been maintained through seaports bordering on oceans. But in the air ocean of postwar days, inland trade centers will be as much ports of the world trade lanes as New York is a seaport today. Every community will be a port with direct access to every other community in the world.” — Carleton Putnam, president of Chicago & Southern Air Lines, Inc., October 1942
  • “It seems apparent now that small-type airplanes can and will be manufactured in the past-war period at a cost low enough to place them within the reach of many thousands of American families. In addition, their operating costs will be so low as to make it practical for civilians to use their own planes for business and pleasure trips of a few miles.” — Donald W. Douglas, Douglas Aircraft, November 1942
  • “An analysis of a market survey of domestic operators, which we recently made, indicates 83 percent of the carriers believe cargo-carrying facilities should be considered a part of future passenger airplane design for domestic trunk line and primary connecting operations in the post-war period.” — J.V. Sheehan, Lockheed Aircraft Corp., January 1943
  • “Point a rocket up and set it off, it will rise. Air cargo, too, will rise. We predict that within 10 years – by 1963 – air cargo revenues will climb higher than passenger revenues.” — Milton A. Caine, Managing Editor, Air Transportation, February 1953
  • “I suggest that any traffic manager who continues to believe the fallacy that it’s cheaper by sea should send a couple of sample consignments by air. If they all did this, I am positive that there would be an awful lot of converts to air freight.” — Malcolm T. Black, director of traffic operations, MSP (Engineering) Co., July 1961
  • “Within the next few years, there is going to be a series of mergers, acquisitions, buyouts, bankruptcies and just plain disappearances of companies that will be unprecedented in air cargo.” — Larry Scheevel, assistant to the president of Burlington Air Express, 1987

Back to Main 75th Anniversary article | Gender roles in air cargo

  Like This Post
Current Issue Magazine Cover
Sign Up Email List