Decline Of General Aviation
dirt and even gravel. The term “General Aviation” can be traced back to the 1950s, and is used for all types of flying that is not military or commercial aviation. These include, private and sport flying, aerial photography and surveying, crop-dusting, and flight training, just to mention a few. General Aviation airports handle all types of aircraft, from small, single-engine, fabric covered aircraft, to multi-million dollar business jets, as well as restored warbirds, helicopters, and homebuilt aircraft consisting of advanced composite materials (Chance, 2007).
The 1920s and 1930s witnessed a boom in General Aviation, with the use of aircraft for crop-dusting and travel. The government attempted to put programs in place for the manufacture of safe aircraft, costing in the $700 range, which would spur general aviation activity. Although the program was a failure, the late 1930s did see the Piper J3 Cub sold for around $1000. With the establishment of the Civil Aeronautics Authority (CAA), a pilot training program, the Civilian Pilot Training Program was created. The intent of the program was to increase the number of pilots in the United States, which if war broke out, could transition to military pilots with little training. While this program did not live up to its promises, it did manage to increase the number of pilots in the United States (Chance, 2007).
The beginning of WWII shifted the focus of aviation from the private sector back to the military, and manufactures…