Lead: In July 1951 the U.S. Air Force awarded the contract for the construction of a new cargo aircraft. The C-130 Hercules has been one of the most successful aircraft in aviation history.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: It was becoming clear by the early 1950s that the U.S. World War II airlift fleet was outdated. The Air Force needed a new approach and awarded a development contract for the design to Lockheed Aircraft (predecessor of Lockheed Martin). The proposed aircraft would need to demonstrate short-distance landing and takeoff from paved or dirt strips, fly long distances with men and matériel, carry large heavy equipment, and do this in the most economical way. The result was the Lockheed prototype YC-130 which flew first in 1954. Since that time over 2500 units have been manufactured and delivered to more than 70 countries, but particularly to the U.S. Armed Services and Reserves.