Martin Becomes First African-American Pilot for Major U.S. Airline #BlackHistoryMonth

Former WWII Army Air Corps pilot August Harvey “Augie” Martin flew part-time for several smaller air carriers before becoming the first African-American to fly for a major U.S. airline. Martin went to work in 1955 for Seaboard & Western Airlines (later Seaboard World Airlines), one year after Seaboard pilots voted for ALPA representation. During his time with the cargo carrier, Martin flew DC-3s, DC-4s, Lockheed Constellations, and Canadair CL-44s. He passed away in 1968 while on vacation. Flying a humanitarian trip to Biafra during the Nigerian Civil War, Martin’s aircraft crashed during a storm. A New York City public high school named for this important trailblazer enables students to obtain pilot certifications while studying there.

Photo credit: Ken Kahn, 


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