The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] hit a bitter-sweet milestone today: the final 747, number 1,574 rolled out of Boeing’s facility at Snohomish County Airport/Paine Field (KPAE) in Everett, Washington.
The 747 has been in production since September 1968.
History of the Jumbo Jet
The 747 was Boeing’s first twin-aisle airliner, dubbed “the Jumbo Jet” because of its spacious cabin. The design was developed in the late 1960s, spearheaded by engineer Joe Sutter.
The first flight of the 747 took place on February 9, 1969, with the first delivery following in 1970 to the now defunct Pan Am Airlines. At the time, Pan Am was the powerhouse airline, and the image of the iconic jet became synonymous with air travel to exotic places.
The news that the last 747 was being produced made headline news around the world, as the versatile jet is or was the backbone of many an airline’s fleet as it is available in both a passenger and cargo configurations.
During its 52 years of service the aircraft evolved, the last iteration of the 747 was the 747-8. The last 747 will be delivered to Atlas Air in early 2023.