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Marquette Airlines

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Marquette Airlines
IATA ICAO Callsign
- - -
Commenced operations1938
Ceased operationsAugust 15, 1940
HeadquartersSt. Louis, Missouri

Marquette Airlines was an airline that operated regional flights in the midwestern United States in the late 1930s and early 1940s.[1]Marquette was founded in 1938 by Winston Weidner "Wink" Kratz, a 33-year-old pilot.[2] It began scheduled service on the St. Louis - Cincinnati - Detroit route on May 4, 1938, with service four days a week, which soon expanded to six days a week, using Stinson Model A tri-motor aircraft.[3][4] Marquette's line connected with the coast-to-coast route of Transcontinental & Western Air (TWA) at St. Louis and Dayton. TWA saw the airline as a potential competitor and initially opposed Marquette's application for an operating certificate.[2]

TWA reached an agreement to acquire Marquette in October 1939, subject to Civil Aeronautics Authority (CAA) approval.[3] On July 3, 1940, the CAA denied TWA's application to purchase Marquette for US$350,000, stating that "it would be clearly adverse to the public interest" for Marquette's operating certificate "to be treated as if it were a speculative security."[5] The CAA approved the acquisition later that year following a supplemental agreement to reduce the purchase price.[6]

TWA took over operation of the Marquette Airlines route on August 15, 1940, allowing TWA to serve Cincinnati and Detroit for the first time, and offer direct service from Cincinnati to Pittsburgh and New York.[7][8] TWA replaced Marquette's Stinson trimotors with newer Douglas DC-2s.[8] The CAB announced on October 18, 1941 that TWA could formally acquire Marquette, despite the airlines having already practically merged at that time.[9]

Tata Sons Ltd., the predecessor of Air India, acquired five of Marquette's Stinson aircraft in 1941 following the requisition of its larger aircraft for war purposes.[10]


  • Cincinnati, Ohio[11]
  • Dayton, Ohio[11]
  • Detroit, Michigan[11]
  • St. Louis, Missouri[11]
  • Toledo, Ohio[11]

See also[edit]

  • List of defunct airlines of the United States


  1. airlines
  2. 2.0 2.1 "CARRIERS: Dudes' Deal". Time. 1939-10-23. ISSN 0040-781X. Retrieved 2021-05-21.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "New St. Louis-Cincinnati-Detroit Airline In Prospect If Sale of Marquette Airlines Is Approved By Civil Aeronautics Authority". The Cincinnati Enquirer. October 15, 1939.
  4. The 1939 Aircraft Year Book (PDF). Aeronautical Chamber of Commerce of America. 1939. p. 200. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  5. "Air Line Merger Is Barred". The New York Times. New York City. Associated Press. July 4, 1940. "It would be clearly adverse to the public interest to allow a certificate of convenience and necessity to be treated as if it were a speculative security, to be sold by the holder to the highest bidder," the authority said.
  6. Highsaw, Jr., James L. (May 1945). "Competition Under the Civil Aeronautics Act". Louisiana Law Review. 6: 161.
  7. "Service Is To Be Doubled By Airline In Cincinnati". The Cincinnati Enquirer. March 23, 1941.
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Open Marquette Route Service". The TWA Skyliner. August 15, 1940.
  9. "TWA to Acquire Marquette Airlines". Detroit Evening Times. October 18, 1941.
  10. Wickstead, Maurice (2016-05-04). "Air-India Part 1". Airways Magazine. Retrieved 2021-05-21.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 "Timetable, November 1938". Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)

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