PILOT'S HANDBOOK OF Flight Operating Instructions FOR Models B - 25C and B - 25D
Clement Melville Keys ( 1876 - 1952 ) founded North American on December 6th, 1928, as a holding company that bought and sold interests in various airlines and aviation - related companies. However, the Air Mail Act of 1934 forced the breakup of such holding companies. North American became a manufacturing company, run by James H. " Dutch " Kindelberger ( 1895 - 1962 ), who had been recruited from Douglas Aircraft Company. N.A.A. did retain ownership of Eastern Air Lines until 1938.
General Motors Corporation took a controlling interest in N.A.A. and merged it with the General Aviation Manufacturing Corporation in 1933, but retained the name North American Aviation. " Dutch " Kindelberger moved the company's operations from Dundalk ( Maryland ) to Los Angeles ( California, both in the United States ), and decided to focus on training aircraft. The BC - 1 ( the well - known T - 6 Texan ) - submitted in March 1937 - was North American's first basic combat trainer aircraft.
In 1940, like other manufacturers, North American started gearing up for war, opening factories in Ohio, Texas, and Kansas. During the Second World War, its two best - known productions so far were the B - 25 Mitchell medium bomber and the P - 51 Mustang fighter.
In 1946, North American's employment dropped from a high of 91,000 to 5,000. Two years later, General Motors divested N.A.A. as a public company. Nevertheless, N.A.A. continued with new designs. The North American F - 86 Sabre achieved fame shooting down MiGs in the Korean War ( 1950 - 1953 ). Unfortunately, the cancellation of the F - 107 and F - 108 programmes in the late 1950s, as well as the cancellation of the Navaho intercontinental cruise missile programme, was a blow to North American from which it never fully recovered.
During the following years, North American's divisions focused on nuclear development, navigation and guidance, radar, data systems and space programme. In September 1967, it merged with Rockwell - Standard, and the merged company became known as North American Rockwell. In 1973, the company changed its name again to Rockwell International.
Today, some of the North American's divisions are owned by both Boeing and Aerojet ( GenCorp Company ).
( source : Wikipedia )