Fortunately for Tulsans, the prosperity of the oil boom laid the foundation for another important industry—aviation. Many of Tulsa’s oil men became enthusiasts of the new and promising field.

The second World War solidified Tulsa’s importance as an oil producer and aviation center. Pilots were trained at Spartan School of Aeronautics, and Douglas Aircraft Co. built its mile-long Air Force Plant No. 2 in 1942 to build bombers.

In later years, McDonnell-Douglas and Rockwell International facilities in Tulsa would contribute to space programs and national defense.