Running Head HOWARD HUGHES by forrests


									Howard Hughes



Howard Hughes Tony Picard Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology

Howard Hughes Abstract Howard Hughes led a very interesting life. He had many


accomplishments and many failures. Howard Hughes was responsible for the building of perhaps, one of the most famous airplanes every built in the world an airplane known as the Spruce Goose. Hughes’ life was full of ups and downs and diseases that plagued him until his death.

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Howard Hughes is one of the biggest well known men in history; he has been credited with many different accomplishments. Howard is best known for aviation, movies, being a billionaire, and also hypochondria. He was born Howard Robard Hughes, Jr., on December 24, 1905, in Houston Texas most people refer to Houston as humble Texas also. His mother, named Allene Hughes and his father Howard Robert Hughes, SR. His father founded a tool business known as Hughes Tool Company. Howard was married twice first to Ella Rice on June 1, 1925 then divorced in 1929. Next was a women named Jean Peters they were married in 1957 and then divorced in 1970. (Pilcher, 1997) Hughes first started his career in 1927 with the making of movies, which he failed his first attempt. Due to his failure he decided to hire Noah Dietrich to head the movie subsidiary of his Tool Company, and Lewis Mileston as director of the picture. In 1928 they had created the motion picture Two Arabian Nights which won them an academy award. The next film that Hughes made was named hells angels at a phenomenal cost of 3.8 million dollars in 1930. The movie ended up costing Hughes 1.5 million at the box office. The rest of the movies Hughes made were very explicit and risky at the time so naturally people did not take to them very well. Among the movies he created were Scarface in 1932 and the outlaw in 1940 both movies not doing very well at

Howard Hughes


the box office. In the late 1930 Hughes built the Texas Theater in Dallas. (Pilcher, 1997) Aviation was probably Hughes’s greatest passion. His aviation career started in 1932 when he formed Hughes Aircraft Company which was a division of his tool company. Hughes attempted many things at the start of his aviation career; on one such attempt he tried to convert a military plan into a racing plane. Hughes attempted to become an airline pilot in 1933 by signing on as a copilot with American airways he used the name Charles W. Howard but his attempt failed when they realized who he was. In 1934 Hughes entered and won the All American Air Meet in Miami. In 1935 Hughes built a test plane named the H-1 which he personally test piloted, at the time this was the most technologically advanced plane which took Hughes to a record speed of 352 miles per hour. During the next to years he broke records for transcontinental flight Between July 10 and 14, 1938, Hughes piloted a special Lockheed 14 with a crew of four on a flight around the world. He beat Lindbergh's New York to Paris record by half, and finished the trip in three days, nineteen hours and seventeen minutes. With World War 2 approaching Hughes turned his attention to building military planes. His regard for secrecy and disregard for military protocol and standardized materials kept him from getting these military contracts. The only military contract that Hughes was

Howard Hughes


given was to build three fling boats this contract was for 18 million and was never accomplished. In fact only one plane was ever built a plane that he named the Hercules, the public ridiculed Hughes for building this aircraft and gave the plane the nickname the Spruce Goose. (Greenstein, 1999) The spruce goose was the largest airplane ever built its wingspan was 319 feet long and the plane weighed almost 400,000 pounds. Most people were very skeptical about the plane they said that it would never leave the ground if Hughes would ever get it built. On November 2, 1947 with Hughes himself personally piloting the airplane it flew remaining airborne 70 feet off the water at a speed of 80 mph for just under a mile. Hughes had proved the critics wrong, but the justification for continued spending on the project was gone. Congress killed the Spruce Goose project, and the aircraft never flew again. Hughes requested that the plan stay in a flight ready condition just in case it would ever need to be called upon. The Spruce Goose was never called upon and it reamained in death in 1976. (Smith, 2001) The second contract that Hughes acquired was to build a reconnaissance plane a prototype of which the XF-11 crashed in Beverly Hills during a test flight with Hughes at the controls, almost killing him. The XF-11 was a tricycle-gear, twin-engine, twin-fuselage, all-metal monoplane with a pressurized central the hanger until his

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crew nacelle. It could best be compared to the Lockheed P-38 lightning. On the XF-11 an oil leak caused one of the counterrotating propellers to reverse its thrust, causing the plane to yaw sharply. He tried to save the airplane by landing it on the Los Angeles Country club golf course, but seconds before he reached his attempted destination the plane started dropping altitude very quickly and the aircraft crashed into a Beverly Hills neighborhood surrounding the country club. When the plane finally stopped after clipping three houses, the fuel tanks exploded, setting fire to a home and the surrounding area. Hughes lay wounded beside the burning airplane until he was rescued by a Marine who was visiting friends next door. The injuries he sustained in the crash, including a crushed collar bone, six broken ribs and third-degree burns on the rest of his body. (Pilcher 1997) Hughes became owner of an airline in 1939 this airline at the time was known as T&WA which stood for Transcontinental and Western Airlines. During the next few years hughes would help to build the airline and eventually rename it TWA, Trans World Airlines. The airline expanded dramatically over the following years with the help of hughes and CEO Jack Frye. Until 1946 Panam had been the only transcontinental ariline in the world and hughes wanted to change that and he did. In 1946 after the court hearings with Panam hughes began making transcontinental

Howard Hughes flights and made TWA the second Airline to fly across the oceans. (Smith 2001)


In 1953 hughes founded the Howard Hughes Medical institute in Delaware. The main goal of of the institute was basic

biomedical research including trying to understand, in Hughes' own words, the "genesis of life itself." Many people viewed it as a tax haven for his wealth. Hughes gave all his stock of the Hughes Aircraft Company to the institute, which turned the contracter into a tax exampt organization. (Smith 2001) Hughes had a number of medical disorders that plagued him most of his life one such disorder the he suffered from was OCD which is Obsesive Compulsive Disorder. OCD is a psychological disorder. OCD is shown in a variety of forms, but is most commonly shown by a subject's obsessive drive to perform a particular task or set of tasks. People who suffer from OCD tend to be perfectionist, they like to have everything in a correct manner. There are a couple cases in Hughes life that were discussed by people who know him. One such case had to do with Hughes comparing the size of the peas before he would it them. He would place in order of size on the plate before he would eat, he would also use a certain size fork to eat them. In another case Hughes was directing one of his movies and spotted something wrong with the dress that the actress was wearing. The problem was that the ruffles in the dress would bunch up and

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make it look like she had to nipples on each dress, of course he was the only one to notice it. Perhaps the most noticable symtem that Hughes suffered from was his phobia of germs in one perticular place that he stayed he blocked off every room except for the living room which he called the “germ free room” even though the room was only blocked off by toilit paper. (Wikipedia 2005) By 1971 hughes had already been living in suclution for many years some say back to 1951 he satyed in different hotels and went from place to place some people thought he was dead or had some type of deadly illness. When Hughes was threatened with evicton out of a Las Vegas hotel he decided to buy it to stay there. In 1971 he finally devorced his second wife Jean Peters it is known that they had been living apart for a number of years. In the terms of the divorce she agreed to an alimony payment of 70,000 dollars a year for the rest of her life which would be ajusted for inflation. She had her name taken off all of the estate. (Wikipedia 2005) On April 5, 1976 Hughes died on his way to his penthouse in Mexico he was 70 years old. He was so unrecognizable to the FBI that they insisted in getting finger prints to identify the body. When the doctors performed Hughes’ autopsy they found his body in very poor condition the doctors found bites of needles broken off into his arms. They determined that the cause of

Howard Hughes


death was due to kidney failure. Hughes estate was valued at 2 billion dollars and was divided among 22 of his family members. The Spruce Goose is now on display in Oregon. (Wikipedia 2005)

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McNamara, James. (2005). First and only flight of the “Spruce Goose”. Retrieved September 16, 2005 from tml Pilcher, Walter. (1997). Howard Hughes famous Texans. Retrieved September 16, 2005 from Smith, Michael. (2001). HK-1 The Spruce Goose. Retrieved September 19, 2005 from Wikipedia. (2005). Howard Hughes. Retrieved September 19, 2005 from

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