Northwest Airlines originally
known as Northwest Airways began operations in 1926 as an
airmail carrier providing airmail service to the United
States Postal Services. In 1934, Northwest Airways
reincorporated as Northwest Airlines.
Airlines had acquired North Central Airlines, Southern
Airways and Hughes Airwest in the late 1970's and early
1980's in its efforts to remain viable in the market.
However, Republic Airlines continued to have great
difficulties. In 1986, Northwest Airlines acquired Republic
Airlines takeover of Republic Airlines was an effort to gain
a stronger hold in the air passenger and cargo markets. This
was a very volatile time for the industry. With airfare
price wars brought on by deregulation, airlines carriers for
the second time in history (see Pan Am) need to ban together
or be taken over through hostile mergers.
Airlines history is a prime example of the degree to which
airline mergers were taking place due to the volatility in
the industry. Record number of mergers that was taking place
throughout the 1970's and 1980's.
Hughes Air Corporation, owned by Howard Hughes created the
Hughes Airwest Airlines after purchasing Air West Airlines.
Air West Airlines had purchased several regional air
carriers; Pacific Airlines, Bonanza Airlines, West Coast
Airlines, Zimmerly Airlines and Empire Airlines before being
taken over by Hughes Airwest.