The Glenn L. Martin
Maryland Aviation Museum
Glenn L. Martin,
the Man and His Company
Born in 1886 in Macksburg, Iowa, “The Flying Dude” was Glenn L. Martin’s nickname shortly after his pioneering flight in 1909. By 1911 he was being mentioned, along with the Wright Brothers and Glenn Curtiss, as one of the leading Americans of powered flight.
In 1912 Glenn Martin set the world record over water by traveling from mainland California to Catalina Island and back. On the return, he delivered mail, also a first.
He gave starts to several of the most prominent men of the aviation industry. (See list at right.)
He built his first aircraft in an abandoned church in Santa Ana, Calif., moved to Los Angeles then was lured to Cleveland. shifted his business to Middle River in 1929 after buying 1,260 acres outside Baltimore. He built the most modern facility of its time, eventually producing more than 11,000 planes. The Glenn L. Martin Company employed more than 50,000 workers during World War II. Glenn L. Martin had a large and lasting impact on the Middle River area. Click here for Glenn L. Martin Company and the Middle River Community.
Glenn Martin died in 1955.
In 1995, the merger of Martin Marietta and Lockheed produced the Lockheed Martin Corporation, one of the world’s premiere technology companies.
The Martin Company employed many of the founders and chief engineers of the American aerospace industry, including:
Dandridge M. Cole - moved on as aerospace engineer at General Electric
Donald Douglas - founder of Douglas Aircraft, later as McDonnell Douglas (now part of Boeing)
Lawrence Dale Bell - founded Bell Aircraft, now Bell Helicopter
James S. McDonnell - founded McDonnell Aircraft, later as McDonnell Douglas (now part of Boeing)
J.H. "Dutch" Kindleberger - CEO and Chairman of North American Aviation
Hans Multhopp - concepts used to create NASA's Space Shuttle
Martin also taught William Boeing how to fly and also sold him his first airplane.