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Lockheed Corporation began as Loughead Aircraft Manufacturing Company
in 1916 and was moderately successful with its seaplane design.
However, in 1921 the company became insolvent, and did not reopen until
1926 as Lockheed Aircraft Manufacturing Company. Lockheed enjoyed modest
success until 1931, when its parent company went bankrupt. Lockheed was
again bought out of receivership in 1932, and in 1934 resumed
operations as Lockheed Corporation. The company enjoyed modest success
with the Lockheed Vega, but the rush of orders for the A-28 Hudson patrol bomber for Britain and the P-38 Lightning fighter by the U.S. Army Air Corps allowed the company to rapidly expand. Some 750,000 square feet (70,000 m2)
of floor space were added in the latter half of 1940, and, by December
1941, the company had 53,427 employees, the largest payroll of any
American aircraft manufacturer at the time.
Production at its factory in Burbank, California, averaged 105 P-38 airframes per month the first year of the Pacific War and 249 P-38 airframes per month for the remainder of the war. Hudson production averaged 97 airframes per month. Other aicraft manufactured during the war included the PV-1 Ventura and PV-2 Harpoon.
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