The Greatest Moments in Aviation History: "Runner up would be the debut of the Douglas DC-3. Rolled out in 1935, the DC-3 wasn’t really the first of anything, but it perfected the evolution of the all-metal passenger transport to become the first truly profitable and mass-produced airliner. So many thousands of DC-3s were built, in civilian and military versions, both in the U.S. and under license abroad, that nobody knows for sure the actual count. As late as the 1960s more than a thousand were still in airline service. Today every passenger plane, from a ten-seater to the 777, bears a debt to this old piston twin.
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