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Guide to the Coralie Hewitt Tillack Collection, 1930-1987
URB/CHT  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Biographical Information:
  • Access Terms
  • Administrative Information
  • Arrangement of Materials:
  • Scope and Contents

  • Overview of the Collection

    Collection Title: Coralie Hewitt Tillack Collection
    Dates: 1930-1987
    Identification: URB/CHT
    Creator: Tillack, Coralie Hewitt, 1920-
    Physical Description: 1.34 linear feet
    Language of Materials: English
    Repository: Urban Archives
    Abstract: In 1956, Coralie Hewitt Tillack began her 26-year employment with Lockheed Air Terminal in Burbank, California. Starting as a telephone switchboard operator and later transferring to Field Operations, Coralie was captivated by the history of the first million-dollar airport constructed in the United States, and gathered material to write a column for the company newspaper. Over the years, Coralie accumulated a large collection of newspaper clippings, magazines, books, and photographs, along with her notes from personal interviews with many of the airport's longtime employees. In 1982, she retired to write her own story of the airport, and her manuscript, Once Upon an Airport, was copyrighted in June 1987. The collection documents her work in writing that history.

    Biographical Information:

    Born in Colorado on August 6, 1920, Coralie Hewitt came to California in 1939 after completing two years at Texas A & M University. Soon after her arrival in California, she enrolled in night school and graduated from Beverly Hills Secretarial College. In 1956, Coralie began her 26-year employment with Lockheed Air Terminal which is located in Burbank, California. Starting as a telephone switchboard operator and later transferring to Field Operations, Coralie was captivated by the history of the first million-dollar airport constructed in the United States, and she began gathering material to write a column for the company newspaper. Over the years, Coralie accumulated a large collection of newspaper clippings, magazines, books, and photographs, along with her notes from personal interviews with many of the airport's longtime employees. In 1982, she retired to write her own story of the airport, and her manuscript, Once Upon an Airport, was copyrighted in June 1987. Later that year, she generously donated her fine collection to the Urban Archives.
    The Hollywood-Burbank Airport opened its doors to the public on May 30, 1930 with a spectacular three-day celebration. At that time, it was named "United Airport," and it encompassed an area of 240 acres which had been purchased and developed by Boeing Air Transport, later known as United Aircraft and Transportation Corporation. In 1934, United Airlines, a subsidiary of the Corporation, merged with several other commercial airlines that had been operating out of the Grand Central Terminal in Glendale, and the airport was renamed "Union Airport." In a brief history of the airport, Coralie Tillack tells us that, "Under the ownership of United, the airfield was a mecca for the golden age of aviation, the time of the Lindberghs, Amelia Earhart, Wiley Post, and Howard Hughes. They all touched down on the field to set the first flight records of speed, altitude, and distance, and to fly the airplanes that became as famous as the pilots who flew them into history."
    The Lockheed Aircraft Corporation purchased the airport in 1940 and renamed it the "Lockheed Air Terminal." Under Lockheed, the airport was expanded to 500 acres and the runways were lengthened. It became one of the four leading airports in the country. A quote from Coralie Tillack's manuscript tells us that during the war years, "...Lockheed Air Terminal assumed a dual role accommodating military flights from all over the world, and at the same time, served as the major commercial landing field in the Los Angeles area." With the opening of Los Angeles International Airport in 1946, Lockheed Air Terminal suffered a dramatic setback when the majority of the major airlines moved their operations to the Inglewood facility. In the ensuing years, however, the airport proved its ability for survival as it became the largest privately-owned airport in the United States. It was utilized for air cargo and aviation fuel services, and became the site for movie and television filming. In recent years, it has become the center for local service airlines. After a major fire in 1966, the terminal was reconstructed and modernized and was given the new name, "Hollywood-Burbank Airport," and today services an area of more than three million people. In 2004, the airport was again re-named in honor of Bob Hope and is called the Bob Hope-Burbank Airport.

    Access Terms

    This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.

    Corporate Name:

    Lockheed Air Terminal (Burbank, Los Angeles County, Calif.)
    Lockheed Aircraft Corporation

    Genre/Form of Material:

    Ephemera
    Paper records
    Publications

    Geographic Name:

    San Fernando Valley (Calif.) -- History

    Personal Name:

    Tillack, Coralie Hewitt, 1920-

    Topical Term:

    Aeronautics -- California -- Burbank (Los Angeles County)
    Airport terminals
    Airport terminals -- California -- Burbank (Los Angeles County)
    Airports -- California -- Burbank (Los Angeles County)

    Administrative Information

    Processing Information:

    Robert G. Marshall, Mary L. Harem; September 1991

    Conditions Governing Use:

    Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection has not been transferred to California State University, Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

    Conditions Governing Access:

    The collection is open for research use.

    Preferred Citation:

    [Identification of item], [date], Coralie Hewitt Tillack Collection , Special Collections and Archives, Oviatt Library, California State University, Northridge.

    Arrangement of Materials:

    Series I: Tillack Manuscript, June 1987
    Series II: Late News Newsletter, 1962-1986
    Series III: Research Files, 1930-1987
    Series IV: Photographic Material, 1930-1987

    Scope and Contents

    The collection contains articles, ephemeral items, historical sketches, manuscripts, newsletters, newspaper clippings, photographs, reports, research papers and related items documenting Mrs. Tillack's work writing her history of the Burbank Airport. It has been divided into four series: Tillack Manuscript (June 1987), Late News Newsletter (1962-1986), and Research Files (1930-1987), and Photographic Material (1930-1987).
    Series I, Tillack Manuscript, contains a copy of the final typed manuscript draft of "Once Upon An Airport" by Coralie Hewitt Tillack. Included within the manuscript are numerous copies of photographs documenting the history of Burbank Airport. The manuscript is arranged by page number in five file folders.
    Series II, Late News Newsletter, includes issues of the Lockheed Air Terminal newsletter, edited by Mrs. Tillack from 1969 until her retirement in 1979. There is almost a complete set of newsletters for this period with various issues before and after her work as editor. The newsletters are filed in chronological order.
    Series III, Research Files, contains historical documents and sketches, newspaper clippings, public relation fact sheets and related published material gathered together by Mrs. Tillack during her research into the history of Burbank Airport. Materials are filed in alphabetical order.
    Series IV, Photographic Material, consists of airport photographs, including opening day ceremonies, aerial views, interior and exterior scenes of the terminal,aircraft, airport employees, and notable avaiation personalities. This material is arranged alphabetically by subject.