Kirksville History

Whitney McFerron

Issue date: 10/21/04 Section: News
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A plane crashed 16 miles south of Kirksville on May 6, 1935, killing five passengers, including Sen. Bronson Cutting of New Mexico.

Outraged, Congress called for a complete investigation of the accident, as well as all other recent plane crashes. A Senate subcommittee was created after the crash to perform the investigations, but because of many committee members' close relation to Cutting, the findings were biased and inaccurate.

At President Franklin D. Roosevelt's request, the Secretary of Commerce hosted National Accident Prevention Conference in December 1935. They found that government funding cutbacks had prevented the airline industry from keeping up with the recent surge in air travel.

In 1938, Congress passed the Civil Aeronautics Act, which required the Civil Aeronautics Authority to investigate causes of airline accidents and to suggest possible solutions to prevent future problems. Two years later, Roosevelt divided the responsibilities of the Authority between the Civil Aeronautics Administration and the Civil Aeronautics Board.

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