View Full Version : Harold Adams book on Douglas Aircraft

12th Oct 2009, 03:01
G'Day Folks

Harold Adams (former Chief Engineer at DAC from 1930 to 1971) wrote a book titled 'The Inside Story - The Rise and Fall of Douglas Aircraft'. To my knowledge it was freely available up until around '02/03, however I've been searching for quite some time and have't been able to locate a copy.

I've been told it makes interesting reading, so if anyone has any ideas on where I might be able to find it (don't mind if its 2nd hand; in fact that's probably all that's around these days) that'd be greatly appreciated.


12th Oct 2009, 14:34
The Rise and Fall of Douglas Aircraft (http://www.vswebdesign.com/douglasbook.com/)

13th Oct 2009, 11:14
Thanks barit1. I have tried to communicate them in the past without any luck, but will give them another try.

Thanks again.

8th Apr 2010, 20:12
I am the person that is hosting Harold Adams little website.
I have no idea where he is, but he gave me one of his books.
I am on the mainland for another couple of weeks, will get back to Hawaii end of April.
If i find the book, its yours.

aloha tomtom92

25th Sep 2011, 07:12
In either late 2006 or early 2007:

Harold Adams was residing in the Philipines with his young Philipina wife and step-children. Harold was still very active building homes as a business. Harold entered his home and surprised two burglars who panicked and murdered him. He was a healthy 96, or so, years old.

My ex-wife was Harold's daughter. I have no idea if she is alive, and if so I doubt that she is aware of his passing since she had not been in contact with Harold for over 50 years.

I have a copy of Harold's book which I will not part with. My son, Harold's grandson, also has a copy.

Chris Scott
26th Sep 2011, 10:40

An internet search bears little fruit. Does America, like Britain, have so little respect for its great engineers that his passing should attract hardly a comment?

There is one short piece on DAC in a blog called Engineer Norm, dated April 8th this year, and entitled "The Demise of Douglas". Here's a link to the blog (you'll have to scroll down to find it):

Engineer Norm (http://www.intellivisiongames.com/engineernorm/)

I hope they, and the anonymous (?) author, will not mind me including the following quotes:

Harold Adams, our chief engineer at the Long Beach plant for many years, ending with the DC-10 era, wrote a book with his explanation for Douglas’ demise, after his retirement to the Philippines.
Mr. Adams opined that often there had been insufficient design oversight. A design concept was sometimes adopted with too little checking, critique, or prototype testing. A prime example was the DC-8 wing. With the same engines and power settings, a Boeing 707 could outrun the early DC-8s. This was corrected on later DC-8s, but it had provided a big advertising plus for Boeing.

When The MacDonnell family took over Douglas Aircraft Company,, they showed little interest in perpetuating the Douglas Commercial heritage. The MacDonnell family, having grown enormously rich, chose to avoid the rough-and-tumble of the commercial aircraft market, which was growing increasingly competitive.

When Boeing bought MacDonnell-Douglas, it had even less interest than MacDonnell in preserving the “DC” tradition.
So at the completion of the production run of the Boeing 717 (nee MD-95) airplane, the Douglas Commercial airplane era was ended.

Such fine craft.

16th Nov 2012, 04:19

My name is Ana, I am one Harold's four step daughters from the Philippines. My dad passed away on 2007. We have copies of his book, The inside story - The rise and fall of Douglas Aircraft which will be available on eBay soon. Thanks for appreciating his work.


18th Nov 2012, 00:52
Ana -

Thank you for checking in! Several of us will be most interested in your father's book.

22nd Feb 2013, 17:46
I too am interested in buying the book. I checked ebay and could not find a listing for the book. Hope to see it available.

4th Apr 2013, 14:28
Thank you for your patience. My dad's book is now available on eBay Philippines.

The Inside Story - The Rise And Fall Of Douglas Aircraft | eBay (http://www.ebay.ph/itm/Inside-Story-Rise-And-Fall-Douglas-Aircraft-/321101767404?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_211&hash=item4ac32822ec)

Please see this page also:

Ana Adams

Chris Scott
4th Apr 2013, 20:17
Quote from aeadams:
Thank you for your patience. My dad's book is now available on eBay Philippines.
The Inside Story - The Rise And Fall Of Douglas Aircraft | eBay (http://www.ebay.ph/itm/Inside-Story-Rise-And-Fall-Douglas-Aircraft-/321101767404?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_211&hash=item4ac32822ec)

Hi Ana,

Am very interested, but as I'm UK-based it will cost me over £90 (PHP 5750) including postage (US$140).

How many do you have to sell? Or are selling your father's own personal copy? If the latter, it goes without saying it would be worth a great deal more than US$140.

5th Apr 2013, 02:14
Hi Chris! I only have few copies of Dad's book on hand, how many copies do you need? I can give you discount on 2 or more but i'll have to check first with the shipping company about the rates. Please send me an email ana_ [email protected] thank you.

5th Apr 2013, 03:04
My email is [email protected], i do apologize for the misprint.

Chris Scott
5th Apr 2013, 08:53

Thank you, but I only wanted one for my personal use. I foolishly assumed that you had organised a reprint in considerable numbers. As that is not the case, I fully understand the price, and I'm sure you will have little difficulty in selling them. Sorry for my misunderstanding.


8th Apr 2013, 20:09
I bought a copy from Ana and it arrived safely in Oz yesterday. Looking forward to reading it. :)

13th Apr 2013, 01:07
The internet is amazing.

I was playing Airline Manager on Facebook and was shopping around for airplanes for short routes. I was looking at the pictures of the early DC-9's and remembered a long time family friend Harold Adams from Southern California and Hawaii (My dad knew him from CA) I only knew him from growing up on the Big Island. After my parents divorced my mom lived with Harold for a short time trying to get him to marry her. He knew better and nothing ever came of it.

Better cut the background story and explain that I have been Googling for the past hour, learning about a book and lots of great info about Harold and came across this forum. I'm so sad to hear about how he died. :sad: The last time I saw him was probably in the late seventies at his house in Puako.

I know if my parents were still alive they'd want me to give my condolences for them too.

Roy Charles Jr.

14th Apr 2013, 22:37

The Douglas family seems to be tight-knit. While he was probably a bit older than you, you might have known Bob Welliver who was son of another Douglas engineer.

On Pprune he used the nickname 411A (he flew a personal Cessna 411A), but he was a longtime L-1011 captain. Unfortunately we lost his wit and wisdom when he died suddenly two years ago. You can still read his posts via the search function.

Many tributes to him may be seen at http://www.pprune.org/where-they-now/449191-411a-has-flown-west.html#post6399678

14th Apr 2013, 22:40
Oh, and welcome to Pprune. It's not always the most genteel forum, but most of us respect and try to learn from each other. Welcome aboard! :ok:

Tumbleweed 867
17th Sep 2017, 12:08
Hello, wasn't aware of this forum until a Google search on Mr. Adams discovered this thread. I'm also not a pilot, though I play one on FS. ;-)

Anyway, sharing this news on Mr. Adams' book from a FB group for DC-9 enthusiasts with the permission of group founder and aviation journalist Geoffrey Thomas:

Dear All: Some of you may have or know of the book ''The Inside Story: The Rise & Fall of Douglas Aircraft" by Harold Adams. Mr Adams, who was tragically murdered in 2007 was the Chief Designer at DAC/MDC and his book is fascinating. I can advise that I am now working with his daughter Ana to make the book available online as a download and this time in color. (The original was all B&W). We are also going to add more images from my collection and from the Boeing archives. I helped Harold with the original book 20 years ago. I will keep you all posted on the progress, release date and price. Best GT