January 7, 1932
Pickens W. Black, a Jackson County planter from Blackville and the first African American known to receive Airman Certification Notification (a pilot’s license), got his student pilot certification. He got his private pilot’s license the next year and his last license in 1958. Aviation history in Arkansas includes one pioneer inventor, a few attempts at commercial airplane production, a regional commuter airline, a now-national air freight company, and varying degrees of impact on the state’s communities. By the 1970s, aviation had become essential both for business use and for personal travel.