Women of Douglas Aircraft

The foundation for the Douglas Aircraft Company started with a woman’s financial support: Charlotte Douglas married Donald in 1916, and cashed in a life insurance certificate she had in savings of $2,000 in 1922 to help launch Douglas Aircraft following his break with Davis.

Charlotte also led the team of women who hand-stitched the fabric covering the wings and fuselages of the Cloudster and Douglas World Cruisers, and performed subsequent detail work within the shop.

Women crafted the fabric covering for the fuselage and wings of the Douglas World Cruisers. [from “Together We Fly: Voices From the DC-3” by Julie Boatman Filucci]

She served as the social director, a counterpoint to Donald’s reserved nature, up until their bitter divorce in 1953.

Douglas, however, was far from finished with having women serve in vital roles for the company.

Peggy Tucker began her time with DAC in the 1930s as a driver, and worked her way up into roles ever closer to “Doug”—to the point where they began an affair leading to their marriage as soon as the ink was dry on his divorce.

As Peggy Douglas, she installed herself literally as the gatekeeper to the executive suite—not as a secretary but as the corporate deputy to Doug.

How did that work out? Read the rest of the tale in “Honest Vision: The Donald Douglas Story.”