1925Pratt & Whitney Aircraft Company is founded by Frederick B. Rentschler in Hartford, Conn., as a partially owned subsidiary of the Pratt & Whitney Company, a toolmaker.
1925The experts say airplane engines should be liquid-cooled, but Pratt & Whitney founder, Frederick B. Rentschler, questions that and finds a better way. Pratt & Whitney builds the Wasp—a lighter, air-cooled engine that revolutionizes the aircraft industry.
1926The U.S. Navy orders 200 Wasp engines—Pratt & Whitney’s first production order. The Wasp soon becomes the dominant engine on Navy and Army Air Force fighter planes. The first production engine was shipped on December 17, 1926.
1927The world becomes a much smaller place when William Boeing installs Pratt & Whitney’s new Wasp engines in his Model 40A mail planes, boosting power and reducing weight—allowing the planes to carry passengers as well as mail.
1929Pratt & Whitney becomes part of United Aircraft & Transport Corporation, which includes such industry leaders as Boeing, Chance Vought, Sikorsky, Hamilton Standard, and a group of carriers that would become United Airlines.
1929Pratt & Whitney crosses the Connecticut River, from Capitol Avenue in Hartford to a new home in East Hartford.