These things don’t happen overnight! The ideas have been brewing for a couple of years, the actual work has been progressing for the past 3-1/2 months.
When this website and blog appeared in 2008, Northwest Airlines was still alive and kicking. There were signals of impending changes, but the red tail still graced the skies. After surviving a hostile takeover and bankruptcy, Northwest again emerged seemingly whole, only to face the loss of its identity when Delta Air Lines absorbed our beloved airline. In the beginning, this website heralded NWA’s early years and centered on the 1950s, before deregulation, when competition between airlines focused on comfort, food and customer service. These were the days of propellers, and Lady Skywriter flew as stewardess Anne Billingsley, working on B-377 Stratocruisers, Lockheed Electras, DC-4’s, 6’s and 7’s.
Decades later, after hearing that Northwest had declared bankruptcy, long-forgotten memories of Northwest’s golden years flooded Anne’s consciousness. The threat of loss stoked a desire to write them down for future reference. These stories became Fujiyama Trays & Oshibori Towels: Recalling a time when passenger flight was an adventure and the Boeing Stratocruiser ruled the skies, written in 2008 and published in 2009. Writing the book led to this website as a means of generating more stories and involving more readers.
Fast forward to today. Having experienced first-hand the sorrow of losing her favorite airline and seeing the red tail disappear from the skies, Lady Skywriter has a much better understanding of how employees and fans of the 12 airlines Northwest acquired over its 82 years must have felt. Just as Northwest “disappeared” into Delta, over time these airlines “disappeared” into Northwest. It is time to celebrate all of these “forgotten” airlines and this website wishes to provide a forum for stories about all of them. On the navigation bar, you will see Northwest Family Tree, which lists all of these airlines and invites you, the reader, to share your stories about them.
Back to the navigation bar, you will also see Legends, which will highlight legendary folks from the NWA Family Tree. Flying Families is self-explanatory. WWII will showcase Northwest’s unique contributions to the war effort in the Northern Region and the Bomber Modification Center. Happenings is a listing of upcoming events you may be interested in. The Blog will function as it always has, with one important addition: guest bloggers! Last, when you click on the Meet Anne page the drop-down menu will offer three categories that used to appear on the navigation bar: Speaking, Awards and Memoir Excerpts.
So explore and enjoy, and let me know what you think!