The Vought Aircraft Division
The site now known as Dallas Global Industrial Center™ has been under long-term occupancy to aviation/aerospace manufacturing companies, which produce, design, manufacture, assemble, and test military and commercial aircraft.
Chance Vought Aircraft is the second oldest aircraft manufacturer in the country. For 92 years Vought aircraft and products have been part of US and foreign military throughout the world. From 1918 thru 2012 our aircraft have been in continuous service. Vought aircraft are some of the most recognizable in the world. Names such as “Corsair”, “Crusader”, “Kingfisher” and “Flying Pancake” are synonymous with Vought.
Vought’s VE-7 was the first aircraft to take off from a US aircraft carrier. Its F-4U “Corsair”, known as the “Whistling Death” was instrumental in winning the war in the Pacific in WWII. A young John Glenn set a land speed record in an F-8 “Crusader”. Vought’s Regulus Missiles were some of the first to be deployed on US submarines. Since its inception Vought has produced over 75 different types of aircraft and missiles. In total, Vought built approximately 16,000 aircraft and missiles, primarily at its locations in Connecticut and later at its Jefferson Street Dallas location. Vought has a long and proud heritage!
Chance Milton Vought 1888-1930
Chance Milton Vought was a pioneer aviator, receiving his FAI license in 1912. He was an engineer, pioneer aviator, aircraft designer, aviation consultant, aviation journalist and aircraft manufacturer. He was a contemporary of the Wright Brothers, Glen Curtiss, William Boeing and all of the other shakers and movers of American aviation. He was a leader every moment of his life, whether at the drafting table, in the cockpit or pitching aviation to the President and Congress. The aircraft that he created became icons of US Naval aviation and the foundation for their early operational concepts.
Vought became consulting engineer for the Aero Club of Illinois, and in 1913 joined the Lillie Aviation School, Chicago, as aeronautical engineer and pilot. In 1914 he became editor of the pioneer American Aviation Weekly, ‘Aero became associated with the Mayo Radiator Works in New Haven, Connecticut, where he designed and constructed an advanced training plane for the use of the British Government during the World War. In 1916 he became Chief Engineer of the Wright Company and produced the then famous Vought Model V Military Biplane. When the Wright Co. merged with Martin Co. to form Wright-Martin Aircraft Co. he continued with the new corporation as aeronautical engineer for a period. He then went on to form the Lewis & Vought Corporation.
The Chance Vought Company 1917-1930
The company was formed in early 1917 as Lewis and Vought. Vought was the engineering and management expert while Birdseye B. Lewis contributed to the financing of the venture. Lewis died in France in mid-1917 as a member of the Army Air Service and Vought went on to build the company. Vought remained the Consulting Engineer and Chairman of the Board until 1922, when the company was succeeded by the one bearing his name. He was President, Chief Engineer and the key marketeer. Vought’s wife Ena was an equal partner in every aspect of the operation.
In postwar 1949, Vought moved operations to Dallas, Texas where the former North American “B” plant was located. Initiated by the Navy, who feared having their two main aircraft manufacturers located on the East Coast posed an unnecessary risk, Vought moved 27 million pounds of equipment and 1300 employees in 14 months, a record breaking industrial move at the time. In 1954, the company fully separated from United Aircraft and became the independent Chance Vought Aircraft Inc.
For over 60 years, this historical site has been the birthplace of thousands of aircraft. From military aircraft, including the A-9, B1 Bomber, and the F-22 Raptor, to commercial airliners such as the 747 and 777, Dallas Global Industrial Center has been an anchor in the aerospace industry, providing products to manufacturers in Texas and across the country. In addition, full design, stress analyses, testing, and support were provided on-site, making it a global provider to the aircraft industry.